Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Blast kills 2 in Southern Philippines

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / June 22, 2011) – Two people were killed when an improvised explosive they were tinkering went off Wednesday inside their house in the southern Filipino province of Sulu, police said.

Police said the two were preparing to pack the explosive with a blasting cap when it detonated killing them instantly. Four other neighbors were also wounded in the blast which leveled nearby shacks, said Chief Inspector Amil Baanan, the police deputy chief for operations.

“That’s the report we received and we were told that the victims had been illegally selling improvised explosive to fishermen who are engaged in blast fishing,” he told the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner.

He said police have previously warned local fishermen not to engage in blast fishing.

“We are coordinating with village officials in the campaign against blast fishing because not only they are illegal and dangerous; they are also destructive to the environment. Corals are being destroyed by this blast fishing,” Baanan said.

He said most of the blasting caps being used by illegal traders came from Cebu and Manila and is assembled with ammonium nitrate widely used as a fertilizer to make deadly explosive devices.

It is also being used by rebels to attack military and police vehicles and other civilian targets because they are inexpensive and widely available from illegal traders and black market. (Mindanao Examiner)

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