Eight dead in suicide bombing at Philippines military camp

Eight dead in suicide bombing at Philippines military camp
Eight people were killed and 22 were wounded after two suicide bombers attacked a military camp in the southern Philippines on Friday. (Reuters/File Photo)
Updated 28 June 2019

Eight dead in suicide bombing at Philippines military camp

Eight dead in suicide bombing at Philippines military camp
  • Maj. Arvin Encinas said the attack occurred at around noon
  • Encinas told Arab News the bombers attempted to enter the camp

MANILA: Eight people were killed and 22 were wounded after two suspected "suicide bombers" attacked a military camp in southern Philippines Friday.

Maj. Arvin Encinas, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom) spokesperson, said the attack occurred around 12 noon at the headquarters of the Army 1st Brigade Combat Team in Tanjung, Indanan, Sulu.

Of the eight fatalities, three were soldiers, three civilians, and the two bomb carriers. The wounded include 10 civilians and 12 soldiers.

The attack took place as the new AFP Wesmincom commander, Maj. Gen. Cirilito E. Sobejana, assumed post vice Lt. Gen. Arnel B. Dela Vega who retired from the service, in a ceremony held in Zamboanga City also on Friday.

Encinas told Arab News the suspected bombers attempted to enter the camp. The first suspect, however, was intercepted at the gate of the camp. 

"It appears that the suspects' initial plan was to bring their bombs inside the camp but during inspection at the gate, our soldiers discovered the explosives which suddenly went off," according to Encinas.

At that point, the suspect detonated the bomb, instantly killing three soldiers and three civilians who were nearby. The suspect also died in the blast which destroyed the gate, leaving the entry of the camp open.

Encinas said another suspect rushed inside the camp and detonated the second bomb. He also died in the process.

A police report said armed men simultaneously attacked the camp following the explosion. A brief encounter between the armed men and government forces ensued.

Asked whether the suspects who carried out the bombing were Filipinos or foreigners, Encinas said it has yet to be determined as they were both blown to pieces. Body parts recovered from the scene may be submitted for DNA testing, he added.

Daesh, in a statement released by its propaganda agency Amaq, has claimed responsibility for the attack.

It said that two of their bombers, identified in the statement as Khattab and Abu Muhammed, have made the sacrifice by storming an anti-terror camp of the Philippine military in Sulu.

"They were able to blow up their explosive belts inside the camp and they have killed over a hundred of the crusaders," read the statement. 

The military have yet to confirm who is behind attack.

The group also released a photo of two young men holding a black flag used by the Daesh. The two were allegedly those who carried out the attack.

The last case of a suicide bombing in southern Philippines was in January. 

An Indonesian couple was believed to have carried out the attack on a Catholic church in Jolo, Sulu where 23 people died and more than 100 were injured.