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Iran Press TV

Twin blasts hit Philippines' restive south, seven wounded

Iran Press TV

Tue Apr 18, 2017 4:46AM

Seven people have been injured in two bomb explosions at a gas station in a city in the Philippines' militancy-riddled south, police authorities say.

The twin blasts took place on Monday evening in the city of Tacurong on Mindanao Island, local media outlets reported.

In the first incident, an improvised explosive device was thrown on the roof of the gasoline station, according to the reports.

According to regional police spokesman, Superintendent Romeo Galgo, two soldiers, three policemen and two civilians were wounded when a second blast went off several minutes later as security forces were trying to cordon off the area.

He also said that two suspects were identified and later arrested in connection with the bomb attacks.

"We cannot conclude yet that this is an act of terrorism. We are looking at all angles as there are threat groups in surrounding areas," Galgo said.

The Philippines is already on alert for sporadic terror attacks in the country, particularly in its southern parts, where the terrorist groups of Abu Sayyaf and Maute operate. Both groups have pledged alliance to the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group, which is itself mainly active in Iraq and Syria.

They are involved in other criminal activities, including rape and drug trafficking, in what they describe as their battle for an independent province in the Philippines.

The groups mainly rely on kidnapping for providing their finances and many say their ideological and religious claims are meant to hide their focus on the lucrative business. The militants have been in constant clashes with Philippine forces across the troubled region in the past 25 years.

Another group active in the southern Philippines is the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, but those militants are engaged in peace talks with the government.

The deadliest recent terrorist attack in the Philippines occurred last year in September, when 15 people lost their lives in an explosion in President Rodrigo Duterte's hometown of Davao.

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