PNP: Local crime groups may be behind Mindanao blasts; Sara Duterte not a target
MANILA, Philippines — The recent bombings in the cities of Koronadal and Tacurong, may be the handiwork of local lawless groups out to sow terror and impose their presence in the area and are not targeting Vice President – elect and incumbent DavaoCity Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said on Thursday.
Duterte-Carpio is set to take her oath of office on June 19, in Davao City.
“In a way, may connection diyan, pero hindi naman siguro target talaga ‘yung ating Vice President-elect,” PNP chief Lt. Gen, Vicente Danao said in an interview on ABS CBN’s TeleRadyo.
(In a way, there could be a connection to the inauguration, but the Vice President-elect may not be a target.)
Danao said the individuals or groups behind the bombing may just want to sow terror in the area or may just want to make their presence felt.
“Ang isa siguro diyan is to sow terror and isa siguro is just for them to be felt that their presence is there,” he said.
The PNP is looking at extortion as a possible motive for the explosions but they have not yet ruled out terrorism.
Danao said the explosions “could be more of the extortion activities” especially as some individuals or some groups might have been affected by the result of local elections there.
Heightened security for Sara’s inauguration
Following the recent bombings, Danao said the PNP will implement additional security measures to further secure the inauguration of Duterte-Carpio.
He advised those intending to attend the event to be at the venue for at least two hours before since security measures will be tightened.
Danao also advised guests not bring bags with them, if possible.
“Kami ay nakikiusap sa ating kababayan, lalo na ‘yung gustong dumalaw, be it by land or by air or by sea, na sisiguraduhin natin na mas magiging mahigpit ang pagpapatupad ng ating security measures area lalong lalo na sa papasok sa area,” he said.
(We are asking you for your understanding, especially those who intend to attend the inauguration, be it by land or by air or by sea, that we will be strict in implementing our security measures, especially those who will be coming to the area.)
“‘Yan ang ating ipapakiusap o pang-unawa especially kung dadalo kayo doon sa inauguration mismo,” Danao added.
(That’s what we want to ask from them — their patience — especially when they are going to the event itself.)
Danao also called on the public to be vigilant.
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