MAGUINDANAO, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / July 13, 2010) – An improvised bomb exploded in the restive southern region of the Philippines and killing a child and wounding three more, an army spokesman said on Tuesday.
Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Hao, of the 6th Infantry Division, said the blast tore through a police outpost in Maguindanao’s Datu Piang town late Monday. Two men riding tandem on a motorcycle were suspected of carrying out the attack, he said.
“A child was killed in the blast and three others are wounded – two of them adults and the other is a college student,” Hao told the Mindanao Examiner.
He said the attackers fled even before the explosion and were being hunted by security forces. “Police and military are still investigating the motive of the attack,” Hao said.
No individual or group claimed responsibility for the bombing, but the town has been in the past a target of attacks by Moro rebels and followers of the powerful Ampatuan clan – linked by authorities to last year’s massacre of 57 people - whose patriarch Andal Ampatuan, former governor of Maguindanao; and his sons, including the governor of the Muslim autonomous region, Zaldy Ampatuan, were implicated in the brutal slayings.
Close to 200 people were accused of participating in the killings and among the victims were at least 32 journalists who accompanied the political caravan of Esmael Mangudadatu, then the vice mayor of Buluan town.
The Ampatuans have been arrested and are currently locked up in prison in Manila, but they still enjoy special treatment because of their influence and immense wealth. (Mindanao Examiner)