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Grenade blast in Zamboanga City seen 1st case of poll violence

/ 10:30 PM October 11, 2012

ZAMBOANGA CITY—A man and a child were wounded in a grenade explosion here on Wednesday which police said could be one of the earliest cases of election violence since the filing of candidacies lapsed on Oct. 5.

The grenade, said a police source who asked to be quoted anonymously for not having authority to discuss the case, said the attack was apparently aimed at a Sulu politician.

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The grenade was thrown at the direction of the politician’s vehicle, said the source.

In a report released by the Directorate for Integrated Police Operation (Dipo) in Western Mindanao, police said the explosion took place near the junction of Camins and Nuñez Street past 5 p.m. on Wednesday.

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Col. Buenaventura Pascual, head of an anticrime unit of soldiers and policemen called Task Force Zamboanga, said two men had been held and are being investigated in connection with the grenade attack. Their identities had been withheld.

The explosion wounded Rudid Bejerano, 20, and Peter Carpio, 12, who just happened to be near the site of the attack.

The police source, quoting witnesses, said one of two suspects hurled a grenade at the pickup truck owned by Firhana Mohammad, mayor of Omar, Sulu, that was parked in the area. It was not immediately known if Mohammad was in the vehicle during the grenade attack.

Mohammad became mayor of the town after the Commission on Elections unseated the previous mayor, Ahmad Omar, and declared Mohammad the real winner of the 2010 elections in the town.

The grenade attack last Wednesday, if confirmed to be aimed at Mohammad, would be the second on the female mayor. Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao

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TAGS: Elections, Violence, Zamboanga City
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