Governor hits IED attack on Army troops in Cotabato

KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 22 June) – The governor of Cotabato on Friday condemned the attack against Army soldiers who escorted a medical team sent to a barangay in Magpet town.

In a statement sent to media, Gov. Lala Mendoza said six members of the 19th Infantry Battalion were wounded when two improvised explosive devices hit two military trucks in Barangay Doles around 1 pm on Thursday.

The soldiers escorted a two-vehicle medical team on its way back to Magpet proper from Barangay Binay, Mendoza said.

She identified the wounded soldiers as 2nd Lt Rustico Barco, Corporals Ronie Gutierrez, Roldan Parcon, and Shanon Obaldo, and Privates Rolando Bublao and Dennis Andol.

They were brought to the Madonna General Hospital in Kidapawan. Barco and Gutierrez were transferred to Davao City on Thursday evening and would be airlifted on Friday to Manila for further treatment, an officer from the 19th IB told reporters here.

A shrapnel hit Barco in the nose Gutierrez in the head, the officer added. The two were seated next to the driver.

The blasts occurred after the vehicles carrying the medical team had passed through a rough road along Doles.

The medical team from the Integrated Provincial Health Office conducted free “Operation Tuli” (circumcision), dental, and other medical services in Binay, Mendoza said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack. (Malu Cadelina Manar/MindaNews)