Philippines mosque grenade attack leaves two dead

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Asia
Wednesday, 30 January 2019

The troubled southern Philippines witnessed a grenade attack on a mosque that killed two people early on Wednesday.

The authorities told the media as the grenade attack occurred just days after a deadly Catholic cathedral bombing and a vote backing Muslim self-rule in the region.
The blast tore through the building as the victims were sleeping in the predawn darkness on the ‘insurgency-plagued’ island of Mindanao, which is home to the Philippines’ Muslims. Blood-streaked prayer mats and shattered glass could be seen on the floor inside the mosque where heavily armed security forces were standing guard, footage from the scene showed.
The blast came as the Catholic-majority Philippines was on high alert after a cathedral bombing claimed 21 lives at Sunday mass in an assault claimed by the militant Daesh (IS) group.
Two people were killed and four others wounded in the mosque attack in Zamboanga City, authorities said, adding they had no indication so far it was retaliation for the cathedral bombing.
“We're still looking at it, but we have not found any connection,” Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana told reporters. “In the past when churches were bombed... there were no revenge attacks.”
Authorities have not publicly identified any suspects and no one has claimed responsibility for the mosque attack.
'Pray for peace'
Security forces are also hunting for the bombers behind the cathedral assault on the overwhelmingly Muslim island of Jolo, which security forces initially said was not a suicide bombing.
However, on Tuesday, President Rodrigo Duterte contradicted them saying one of the bombers had blown himself up outside the cathedral.
On Wednesday, Lorenzana appeared to walk back the president's comments, saying: “The final conclusion is not there yet. It's still being investigated.”
The probe was zeroing in a group tied to the notorious kidnap-for-ransom group Abu Sayyaf, which has pledged allegiance to Daesh.
Police said they tried to arrest one of the suspects on Tuesday, but he got away and an armed man was shot dead by officers in the process.

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