Residents discover explosive in Maguindanao town

By Edwin Fernandez

September 21, 2019, 11:18 am

CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao – Alert civilians prevented what could have been a bloody Friday morning when they alerted authorities about the presence of a powerful anti-personnel mine (APM) in Datu Salibo town in this province.

The APM, fashioned from an 81-mm. mortar projectile with a mobile phone as a trigger mechanism, was recovered by military troops in Barangay Sambulawan, Datu Salibo at about 9 a.m. following the report from civilians.

Soldiers of the Butalo Patrol Base of the 38th Infantry Battalion (IB) were patrolling the vicinity of Barangay Sambulawan when they were informed of what appeared to be a bomb.

Personnel of the Army’s 57th Infantry Battalion (IB) stationed nearby immediately responded and cordoned off the area.

The APM was safely deactivated and was brought to the 38IB headquarters in Barangay Awang, Datu Odin Sinsuat for proper disposal.

“This is a commendable feat attributed to the diligence and vigilance of our forces. I laud our troops for their prompt actions that forestalled another bombing attempt of terrorists in the area,” said the Army’s 6th Infantry Division commander, Maj. Gen. Diosdado Carreon, also Joint Task Force Central chief.

“We take preemptive and decisive actions to counter attacks employed by terrorists to inflict casualties on civilian and military objects,” Western Mindanao Commander Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said in a statement.

“These preventive measures are complemented by the sustained cooperation of communities and the deliberate and mounting counter-operations and intelligence buildup of our forces in terrorist-infested areas,” he added.

Datu Salibo is one of the towns in Maguindanao where the Islamic State-linked Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) mainly operates. (PNA)