• Mon
  • Dec 29, 2014
  • Updated: 12:39am
NewsAsia
PHILIPPINES

Suspected Philippine rebels bomb high-voltage tower

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 09 February, 2014, 8:14pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 09 February, 2014, 8:14pm
 

Suspected hard-line Muslim rebels detonated bombs but failed to topple a high-voltage power transmission tower in the southern Philippines in their latest attempt to derail a looming government peace deal with a larger insurgent group, the military said on Sunday.

The suspected Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement fighters rigged four bombs fashioned from mortar rounds at the base of the steel tower in a mountain village in Sultan Kudarat town in Maguindanao province late on Saturday, regional military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Dickson Hermoso said. Three of the bombs went off and damaged the tower, but it failed to collapse or cause a power outage.

Hermoso said the desperate rebels were resorting to acts of economic sabotage to try to derail a looming peace agreement that they oppose between the government and the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

The rebels were also believed to have placed a homemade bomb at a liquefied petroleum gas store in Kabacan town in nearby North Cotabato province Wednesday, but villagers discovered the explosive and called the police. The bomb went off while army troops were trying to defuse it, wounding two passers-by and setting the cooking gas store on fire, police said.

The rebels broke off from the 11,000-strong Moro Islamic Liberation Front three years ago, saying the main rebel group’s peace negotiations with the government would not lead to the establishment of a separate Islamic state that they have long aspired. They vowed to continue fighting for a separate homeland for minority Muslims in the south of the predominantly Roman Catholic country.

Philippine troops killed 52 of the hard-line rebels and captured a key Maguindanao stronghold with a bomb-making facility in a recent offensive. Army troops and police were hunting the breakaway rebels and their commanders, Hermoso said.

Share

For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 

This article is now closed to comments

M Miyagi
Mindanao should become an independent Muslim nation.

Login

SCMP.com Account

or