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    » 04/14/2008, 00.00

    PHILIPPINES

    Bomb attack against Zamboanga cathedral

    Santosh Digal

    Placed under a car in the church parking explosive device damages wall and windows. Three militants from Abu Sayyaf, al-Qaeda’s Filipino branch, are blamed.

    Zamboanga (AsiaNews) – Suspected Islamic militants from Abu Sayyaf, al-Qaeda’s Filipino branch, placed a bomb in the compound of Zamboanga’s Roman Catholic cathedral and in a building housing a government office yesterday. No one was injured in the ensuing blasts.

    No one was hurt in the explosion but a wall and windows were damaged.

    Regional police Chief Superintendent Jaime Caringal said a mortar round was hidden in a box under a car in the parking lot of the Immaculate Conception Cathedral.

    A church caretaker saw three men fleeing the scene on a motorcycle shortly before the blast. He said the men were overheard talking in Tausug, a dialect spoken by Muslims in Mindanao.

    For Caringal the men were Islamic militants.

    Zamboanga Archbishop Romulo Valles called for prayers and described the attack as a work of evil that must be condemned.

    “We are saddened by this bombing attack. It’s a symbolic place and it is Sunday and there’s a lot of churchgoers, but it’s a great comfort for us to know that no one was hurt or killed,” he said.

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    See also

    04/08/2008 PHILIPPINES
    Supreme Court blocks peace deal between MILF and government
    Court’s decision is intended to placate protest. Public opinion is largely against an expanded Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. Both Christians and Muslims are against the deal.

    10/06/2007 PHILIPPINES
    Father Bossi’s kidnappers probably MILF fighters
    The official announcement of the missionary’s abduction was made by Col Godofredo Paderanga, a Filipino Army officer stationed in Mindanao. Father Bossi is the third Italian priest kidnapped in the area in the last ten years.

    28/06/2007 PHILIPPINES
    Mindanao: non-stop prayers and continued hope for Father Bossi
    One of Father Bossi’s fellow missionaries talks about the moving mobilisation, which includes prayer campaigns and messages of solidarity.

    23/08/2006 PHILIPPINES
    In Mindanao, the Church working for tribal people, not the rebels
    The bishop of Kidapawan and PIME's Fr Peter Geremia tell local army commanders that the Church is not involved with Communist guerrillas. The military offers their assistance to the Church in its pastoral mission in the diocese.

    08/08/2005 PHILIPPINES
    Thousands of troops to supervise elections in Mindanao
    There are fears of violence, electoral fraud and Islamic terrorism. Ten suicide bombers from Indonesia might be in the country. Catholic sources warn that no one will be able to vote freely because electoral corruption is too ingrained—many will abstain.



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