Suicide bomber dies in Philippines; no other casualties

Police line up for a flag-raising ceremony outside a station in Quezon City Police District in Manila in April. (Reuters)
Updated 08 September 2019

Suicide bomber dies in Philippines; no other casualties

  • The suicide attacker tried but failed to enter a detachment in Sulu province’s Indanan town and died

MANILA: A militant wearing a traditional black Muslim woman’s gown was killed in a suicide bombing attack Sunday on a military detachment in the southern Philippines that failed to inflict any other deaths or injuries, officials said.
The suicide attacker tried but failed to enter a detachment in Sulu province’s Indanan town and died when a bomb the militant was carrying exploded, officials said. It was the third known suicide attack in Sulu this year.
Regional military chief Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said the bomber failed to enter the detachment due to tight security. The militant had long hair and wore a black Muslim gown but a hand severed in the explosion appeared to be too large for a woman, Sobejana said in a statement.
“The suicide bomber was ... foreign looking with long hair based on the recovered mutilated head, however, the recovered dismembered hand is similar to that of a man,” Sobejana said.
A military spokesman in Sulu, Lt. Col. Gerard Monfort, said by phone that troops took cover and assumed combat positions, some behind sand bags, when the militant refused to step away from the outpost’s gate and carried something that bulged in the bomber’s gown.
“A wary soldier yelled at the militant to ‘Don’t enter, go away, go away’ and other soldiers who heard him took cover and assumed combat positions,” Monfort said. “Then an explosion killed the militant.”
The blast damaged the detachment’s gate but did not cause any other deaths or injuries, Monfort said, adding that there were no civilians in the rural area at the time.
A device that was apparently used to trigger the explosion was recovered from the scene, which has been cordoned off and was being examined by bomb experts and police investigators, Sobejana said.
It was the third known suicide bombing this year by militants linked to the Daesh group in Sulu, including a deadly Jan. 27 bombing by an Indonesian militant couple in a Roman Catholic cathedral in the predominantly Muslim province.
In July, two suicide attackers separately detonated explosives in another military encampment in Indanan, killing the two militants. Authorities later confirmed through DNA tests of the remains of the attackers that one was a Filipino, the first known local militant to carry out a suicide attack.
All the suicide attacks, including Sunday’s explosion, sparked security alarms and were blamed by the military on the Abu Sayyaf, a small but brutal group that has been the target of ongoing military offensives. The Abu Sayyaf has been blacklisted by the US and the Philippines as a terrorist organization.


UK police arrest man after stabbing at London Central Mosque

Updated 49 min 57 sec ago

UK police arrest man after stabbing at London Central Mosque

  • Victim was treated by paramedics before being taken to hospital
  • Man who was attacked in his 70s and stabbed multiple times

LONDON: A man attacked the elderly muezzin at one of London’s main mosques on Thursday, stabbing him in the neck before being arrested.

Metropolitan Police said they were called to London Central Mosque in Regent’s Park after reports of a stabbing.

Police were called to London Central Mosque, also known as Regent's Park mosque, on the city's Park Road to reports of a stabbing. (James Stringer/Flickr)

The attack targeted the muezzin, who performs the mosque’s call to prayer, the Muslim hate crime monitor TellMAMA, said. 

The man who was attacked is in his 70s and was stabbed multiple times, Sky News reported.


He was treated by paramedics before being taken to hospital. His injuries are thought to be non-life threatening.

Police said a man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of attempted murder and a crime scene was put in place.

Video showed police subduing a man inside the mosque before leading him away in handcuffs. He was wearing a red hooded top and no shoes. 

Director-general of the Islamic Cultural Centre, part of the mosque, Dr. Ahmad Al-Dubayan described the attack and the emergency services’ response while confirming the victim was in a good condition.

He told Arab News: “We don’t have any information about the motive for this incident, why he did this or who he is even.

“Of course, we are unhappy about what happened, but we all hope that it was an individual attack and nothing linked to anything further than this attack itself.

“But we are worried and sorry about what has happened.” 

A makeshift area for sunset prayers was set up in the mosque so that worshippers could still pray despite the incident.