Defense dept calls for continued vigilance amid Sulu bombings

Published June 30, 2019, 3:04 PM

by Martin Sadongdong & Antonio Colina

By Martin Sadongdong 

The Department of National Defense (DND) on Sunday urged security forces and the public to remain vigilant to thwart future attacks similar to Friday’s suspected suicide bombings in Indanan, Sulu, which claimed eight lives.

DND public affairs office chief Arsenio Andolong (AP / MANILA BULLETIN)
DND Spokesman Arsenio Andolong

DND spokesman Arsenio Andolong said a thorough investigation is being conducted to punish the group behind the attack at the military camp of the Army’s 1st Brigade Combat Team (1BCT) at Sitio Tanjung, Barangay Kajatian.

“The DND calls for continued vigilance in light of the recent bombings in Sulu which led to the very unfortunate loss of lives, both civilian and military,” Andolong said in a statement.

“We extend our sympathies to the victims of this heinous act, and vow to hunt down those who are responsible,” he added.

Andolong said the brazen attack only highlighted the importance of cooperation between the security sector and communities to prevent and counter violent extremism, especially in the southern part of the country.

“Rest assured that government forces on the ground are conducting a deeper investigation on the incident and will not stop until those who are behind it are caught or eradicated,” he noted.

The bombings killed three soldiers, three civilians and two of the attackers.

The attack was carried out despite the whole of Mindanao being placed under the martial law.

Military officials believe the Abu Sayyaf masterminded the attack as a glaring challenge to the new leadership of the Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom).

The attack happened during the turnover of command for Major Gen. Cirilito Sobejana as WestMinCom chief.
Sobejana had vowed to crush the Abu Sayyaf before the year is over.