Army defuses powerful IED in Maguindanao-A A +A
Friday, January 4, 2013
CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao -- Alert soldiers securing the town hall of Shariff Aguak in Maguindanao province prevented what could have been a bloody Friday morning when they safely defused a powerful improvised explosive device (IED) left at the main gate of the town hall, the military said.
Colonel Prudencio Asto, speaking for the 6th Infantry Division, said the IED, fashioned from two 81-mm mortars with mobile phone as trigger mechanism, was found at the gate of the town hall in Shariff Aguak proper by elements of the 1st Mechanized Infantry Brigade.
“Our bomb disposal team has successfully defused the powerful IEDs," Asto said in an interview.
Asto said he was convinced the IED was meant for soldiers who regularly patrol and gather at the main gate of the town hall compound after roaming around town.
Asto believes the IED could also be intended for political leaders that report for work at the town hall.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attempt but the police and Army are looking at extortion gangs or lawless elements out to disrupt the prevailing peace and order in Shariff Aguak.
Mayor Saharan Upam-Ampatuan of Shariff Aguak called on the residents to remain vigilant and report to authorities any suspicious looking persons or bags left unattended in populated areas of Shariff Aguak town.
Asto said soldiers have remained on alert after the holiday season as lawless elements, like the al-Khobar extortion gang, are making noises again.
The Al-Khobar gang, composed of former Moro rebels turned bandits, was blamed in the bombing of a Husky Bus in nearby Isulan, Sultan Kudarat that left 15 persons wounded. A unit of the Yellow Bus line was also damaged in the incident.
On Dec. 28, an improvised bomb was left at a roadside in Tacurong City which went off at 10:30 p.m. leaving three persons wounded.
On Dec. 30, a suspected bomber was arrested while another was killed in a shootout with policemen in Tacurong City after they lobbed two hand grenades at the house of Mayor Emilio Salamanca of President Quirino, Sultan Kudarat. (PNA)