3 hurt in Tacurong City blast

December 27, 2012 11:32 am 

GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Dec. 27 — Three people were injured in a bomb explosion late Wednesday evening at a section of the commercial district in Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat province, an official said Thursday.

Supt. Junny Buenacosa, Tacurong City police chief, said the improvised bomb exploded at around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday by the roadside infront of a Western Union outlet and the Fit Mart department store at the city’s downtown area.

He said the scene of explosion was just a few meters away from the city’s main rotunda and a waiting area for passengers of public utility vehicles.

“The explosive was planted by the roadside and there were some people situated near the area when it went off,” he said.

Buenacosa identified the injured victims as Christian Jay Gabaon, 26; Jessa Marcelino, 23; and, James Salen, 26.

He said Gabaon and Marcelino were brought to the Tamondong Hospital in Tacurong while Salen, who was in critical condition, was rushed to the General Santos City hospital.

Citing a technical report filed by the city’s explosives and ordnance disposal (EOD) team, the official said the explosive was fashioned from a 60mm mortar that was attached to a battery pack and a mobile phone.

He said the EOD team recovered fragmented pieces of 9-volt batteries, an unspecified mobile phone and a 60mm mortar.

Buenacosa admitted that they had received numerous reports on threats of bomb attacks in the city, specifically during the area’s celebration of the Inugyunay Festival.

He said they have tightened the area’s security and was able to avert any attack during the Christmas festivity, which ran from Dec. 7 to 23, and in the Christmas Eve celebrations.

“We’re still on full alert and we have reinforced our security measures in the entire city,” he said.

Last month, an improvised bomb also exploded near a ticketing office along the national highway in the area but no casualties were reported.

Local police operatives then arrested a suspect identified as Abdul Usman, who allegedly admitted his involvement with the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement (BIFM) under a certain Commander Gani.

The BIFM, a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), was organized by MILF rouge leader Ameril Umra Kato. (PNA)

FFC/AVE

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