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Soldier dead, 2 civilians hurt in 2 Maguindanao blasts

/ 12:09 PM January 10, 2018

SHARIFF AGUAK, Maguindanao–A soldier was killed while two civilians were injured when a suspected Islamic State-inspired Moro armed group set off two separate roadside bombs in Maguindanao Tuesday, the military here said Wednesday.

Multiple shrapnel wounds killed Private First Class Ian Chris Celeste, a member of the 57th Infantry Battalion when he and his companions were conducting a post-clash operation near Mt. Firis, particularly in Barangay Maitumaig in Datu Unsay town.

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In a report, the 601st Infantry Brigade said the 9 a.m. roadside bombing was part of the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) diversionary tactic while retreating from Mt. Firis, which straddles the towns of Datu Unsay, Datu Saudi Ampatuan and Datu Hoffer, where sporadic clashes had taken place since December 25.

“The improvised bomb was meant for soldiers conducting post-conflict clearing operations,” the 601st Brigade said.

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Two hours earlier, the BIFF also set off a roadside bomb along the national highway in Barangay Labo-Labo, Datu Hofer, Maguindanao that injured two passersby.

Maj. Gen. Arnel dela Vega, 6th Infantry Division commander, said a convoy of military vehicles from the 57th IB was proceeding to Datu Hoffer town proper when the bomb exploded but missed the vehicles. The two civilians suffered minor injuries, he said. Edwin Fernandez INQ

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TAGS: 601st Infantry Brigade, Arnel de la Vega, biff, improvised bomb, Soldier
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