AFP: No conclusive proof yet that Sulu bomber was Moroccan
ZAMBOANGA CITY –– The military here said there was no proof yet that the second bomber, who died in the June 28 twin blasts in Indanan, Sulu, was a Moroccan.
Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of the Armed Forces’ Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom), said on Wednesday that the presumption that the Caucasian bomber was a Moroccan, stemmed from the visual assessment and reports made by the troops on the ground.
The twin explosions at the camp of Battalion Combat Team in Indanan killed eight persons – three soldiers, three civilians, and the two bombers – and wounded 12 soldiers and 10 civilians.
One of the bombers has been identified as Filipino Norman Lasuca, 23, reportedly an Abu Sayyaf Group member.
Sobejana admitted that they presumed that the other bomber was Moroccan after viewing an old video of two Moroccan boys left in the care of Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, a sub leader of the Abu Sayyaf in Sulu.
The two young Moroccans, then aged 9 and 11, were reportedly left behind by their father, suicide bomber Abu Kathir al-Maghribi, before he set off to Lamitan where, on July 31, 2018, he blew himself up.
The powerful explosion, which transpired in the city’s outskirts, killed him and nine other persons, and wounded seven others.
“Yung Moroccan, tantiya lang namin (was just our presumption). We have seen the kids sa video, saw him as a potential bomber. Naglalaro lang isip natin (We are just toying with the idea) and … not yet conclusive,” Sobejana said in a phone interview on Wednesday, June 3.
Sobejana said the military would need at least 10 days to ascertain if the second body was Moroccan.
“We are waiting for the DNA results and it will take about 10 days. Everything is not conclusive, we need to get hold of scientific findings,” Sobejana added.
Meanwhile, Sobejana said the military also placed the mother and brother of Lasuca in their custody for tactical debriefing.
Lasuca, 23, reportedly left his family in 2014.
Major Arvin John Encinas, Westmincom spokesperson, said Vilma Lasuca and one of her sons, Alhussin, retrieved the head and feet of one bomber, “but we want to determine how they were able to discover that the bomber was her son (and)who informed them.” (Editor: Leti Boniol)
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