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The Philippines

Death toll from bombing at Philippine street festival rises to 2

More than 30 people are injured after explosion in front of a restaurant on a highway in Isulan on the island of Mindanao. IS has taken responsibility, but authorities refute that claim

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 28 August, 2018, 11:51pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 29 August, 2018, 10:07am

Another person has died from injuries sustained when a bomb went off at a street festival in the southern Philippines, raising the death toll to two, the military said on Wednesday.

A home-made bomb hidden under a motorcycle killed also wounded more than 30 at the festival on Tuesday, the latest unrest in a region prone to militancy.

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General Cirilito Sobejana said at least one of the 35 wounded was in serious condition.

The explosion took place in front of a restaurant on a highway in Isulan in Sultan Kudarat province.

Sobejana said the bomber offered fruit to people to evade suspicion when he abandoned a bag containing the bomb. Wary residents still alerted police when the man hurriedly left the bag. Troops chased the man when villagers pointed to him but he fled on a motorcycle that had its engine already running as the bomb exploded, Sobejana said.

He said at least one of the 35 wounded was in serious condition.

The province is on the Philippines’ second-largest island, Mindanao, parts of which have been plagued by decades of Maoist and Islamist rebellions that have given rise to banditry and extremism. Mindanao remains under martial law until the end of the year.

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The incident comes a month after a bomb was detonated in a van that was stopped at a military checkpoint on the island of Basilan which killed 11 people, including four civilians.

Islamic State claimed responsibility, which the military disputes, suspecting that a local group was behind it, intending to target civilians in an urban area.

With additional reporting by Associated Press