1 dead, 2 hurt in IED blast in Cotabato waiting shed
COTABATO CITY –– One person was killed and two others were hurt when an improvised explosive device went off at a waiting shed in Tulunan town, Cotabato province at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 27.
Major Jun Napat, Tulunan town police, said the blast occurred at a waiting shed as a Yellow Bus unit arrived and was about to park.
He identified the fatality as Gina Paunon, 53, a sidewalk vendor, and one of the three persons rushed to the Sorilla Medical Hospital some 50 meters away from the blast site.
The police believed that the IED was planted at the waiting shed and set off as the bus arrived. The explosion was not inside the bus but at a roadside, Napat said.
“It was set off as the bus was about to park.”
The bus driver told the police that all bus passengers were safe though the YBL unit incurred shrapnel marks on its side and its front, while its rear tires were deflated.
The police said the bus firm had been receiving extortion demand from unidentified men who threatened to set off bombs if the demands were ignored.
The blast came two days after a powerful improvised bomb that went off in South Upi, Maguindanao killed a motorist and injured another.
A secondary bomb made of 105 howitzers was found and defused by bomb experts.
North Cotabato Gov. Nancy Catamco condemned the attack and called on the police to hunt the perpetrators.
“This is a clear travesty of our laws. We see this as another challenge to our efforts to maintain peace in our area,” she said.
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