8 wounded as twin blasts rock Tacurong City

TACURONG CITY-- At eight persons, including five soldiers and police officers, were hurt as two explosions rocked this city at around 7 p.m. Monday, police said.

Senior Supt. Raul Supiter, Sultan Kudarat provincial police director, said the first explosion ripped the rest room of Dragon Gasoline station located along the national highway here.

It was followed by another blast in front of the gas station.

"Bomb experts and police were conducting a post blast investigation when the (second) IED (improvised explosive device) went off," Supiter told reporters.

Civilians alerted the police of another bomb near St. John Learning Center in Barangay New Isabela, about 100 meters away.

The space beside the gas station, which has a convenience store and a resto bar, was filled with people.

Supiter identified the injured as bomb disposal team members S/Sgt. Ipil Presaldo, S/Sgt. Menzo Salsalito Manoy, SPO2 Jasper Garcia, PO1 Martin San Pedro, PO1 Eleazar Sustiguer and three civilians identified only as Bobong Bamo, Michael Pon and an unidentified man.

Text messages have been circulating in Central Mindanao about an alleged bomb plot by the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters in the cities of Tacurong, Koronadal, Kidapawan, Davao and Cotabato to avenge the death of Abu Sayyaf members who clashed with government troops in Bohol last week.

Source: Philippines News Agency