KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews/01 April) — Two bombs exploded along the Kidapawan-Magpet highway in North Cotabato at around 6:30 a.m. Sunday, just as a military truck and two private vehicles passed but not one of the passengers was injured, Lt. Manuel Gatus, chief of the civil military operations of the 57thIB, said.
Gatus,who was on board the truck when the explosions happened, said they were on their way to Magpet town to monitor and assess the situation in Barangay Bagumbayan, where soldiers recently clashed with members of the New Peoples Army.
He said two bombs were planted along the highway in Purok-Uno,Barangay Mateo here.
The first bomb, he recounted, exploded when a motorcycle and a multi-cab passenger rvehicle were passing by, while the other went off just as they reached the area.
“Although the passengers of the private vehicles were not hurt, they suffered psychological trauma when they heard the loud blasts. The elements of the 57th IB who were the targets of theattack suffered no casualties,” said Gatus.
He condemned the “acts of terror” of the NPA.
The blasts occurred three days after government troops and the NPA clashed in Sitio Bantaan, Barangay Bagumbayan in Magpet town, just as the communist guerillas were celebrating the 43rd anniversary of NPA.
The recent clashes resulted to four people dead, three of them suspected rebels, and the other a member of the Alpha Company of the 57th IB. (Malu Cadelina-Manar/MindaNews)