Eastern Visayas top cop orders men to step up security measures after Leyte explosion

The Philippine National Police (PNP) regional office has ordered police chiefs in Eastern Visayas to step up security measures to prevent bombing incidents, following the explosion at the town plaza of Hilongos, Leyte that injured 32 people.

On Thursday morning, PNP Eastern Visayas Regional Director Chief Supt. Elmer Beltejar issued a directive "to initiate appropriate counter measures to preempt or negate any similar incident that might transpire in their respective areas of responsibility."

"The PNP will remain steadfast in performing its mandated tasks to ensure the safety of the people who live and sojourn in the region, free from threats and harm," Beltejar said in a statement.

The police official condemned the explosion incident that injured 32 people, based on official reports. There were about 500 people packed at the town plaza to watch an amateur boxing bout on Wednesday night when an improvised explosive device went off around 9:30 p.m.

The boxing event is part of the town's annual fiesta celebration.

"The PNP will also continue to exert all its efforts to bring other perpetrators of crimes to justice and will hold them responsible for their criminal acts," Beltejar added.

Out of 32 victims, 16 were already treated while 16 are still recuperating in different hospitals - six at Hilongos District Hospital; five at Hilongos Baptist Hospital, two at Living Hope Hospital in Maasin City, and three at the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center in this city.

Source: Philippines News Agency