MAGUINDANAO, Philippines -- A soldier was injured in another roadside bombing believed done by the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters in Datu Saudi Ampatuan town on Tuesday. The wounded soldier, Sgt. Ricor Bati-on, has been brought to a hospital.
Bati-on and his companions were on their way to a secluded barangay west of Datu Saudi town in the second district of Maguindanao to verify reports presence of gunmen extorting money from farmers when BIFF bandits allegedly detonated the bomb planted along their path.
Responding Army and police ordnance experts said the improvised explosive device was fashioned from a mortar round rigged with a blasting mechanism that can be detonated from a distance using a mobile phone. Local officials said they have received information from barangay residents that the BIFF was behind the roadside bombing.
The group has perpetrated more than a dozen roadside bombings in the past 12 months in Maguindanao’s adjoining Datu Saudi, Salibo, Shariff Saidona and Datu Piang towns. Captain Joann Petinglay, spokesperson of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, said Army personnel are in Datu Saudi and are now in pursuit of the bandits who planted and set off the IED.