Marawi can't be SE Asia's Raqqa: PM

Lisa Martin

Malcolm Turnbull warns the troubled southern Philippines city of Marawi must not become the Raqqa of southeast Asia.

"It's vitally important that the (Islamic State) insurrection in the Philippines is defeated," the prime minister told Neil Mitchell on 3AW radio on Friday.

Raqqa in Syria is Islamic State's quasi-capital. Since June US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces have been leading an offensive to reclaim it, supported by coalition airstrikes.

The Philippines defence force has been fighting IS militants in Marawi since May, and foreign fighters returning from Iraq and Syria are being drawn to the city.

The conflict had displaced an estimated 400,000 people.

Australia has so far sent two P3 Orion reconnaissance and surveillance planes to assist the Philippines.

Foreign policy experts warn Australia may have to offer mentoring to Filippino troops similar to the programs in Iraq and Afghanistan.

IS has released a video labelling Australia a guard dog to the US in the region.

Mr Turnbull declined to respond saying, he wouldn't be running a commentary on terrorist propaganda.

Asked about the prospects of Australian boots on the ground in the Philippines he told reporters in Moruya on the NSW South Coast he wouldn't speculate about hypotheticals.