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UNTV EXCLUSIVE: PNP discloses components of IED used in Isulan blast

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, August 31st, 2018

The components used in building the IED that rocked the town of Isulan in Sultan Kudarat on August 28, 2018 | PRO 12


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) has deployed bomb experts to Isulan, Sultan Kudarat to examine the components of the improvised explosive device (IED) recovered from the blast site.

PNP Chief Oscar Albayalde said the team of experts is expected to help the authorities identify the group behind the explosion on Tuesday night (August 28) that horrified the community and killed three civilians.

Based on the images acquired by UNTV, the suspects in the blast used a cellular phone as a triggering device. Its power source was a 9 volts battery and the body or the container was formed using a barrel of a water pump.

Initial reports suggested that the power source and the triggering device in the Isulan blast were similar to those recovered in the botched explosion at Unitop Koronadal on August 18 during the celebration of the Koronadal International Folklore Festival.

A similar water pump was also used in the IED recovered in the failed explosion at the camp of the Philippine Army 33rd Infantry Batallion in Datu Paglas, Maguindanao in July.

Given the characteristics of the IED components, Albayalde ordered bomb experts to identify if the persons behind the Isulan blast were the same persons who planted the IEDs in the previous bombing attempts.

Since the explosion on Tuesday, speculations about several groups masterminding the blast surfaced, implicating the Abu Sayyaf Group and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), or the Dawla Islamiya Abu Turaife Group.

“Iyong bomb data center pinapunta natin doon to collate yun para makita kung ano talaga itong signature, kung saan galing or kung sino may gawa nitong IED na ito,” Albayalde said.

Reports, however, surfaced that the explosion in Isulan was claimed by the international terror group ISIS.

Meanwhile, Albayalde admits that the authorities in Mindanao did not expect the explosion to happen despite heightened security measures being imposed in the region. In fact, 260 security personnel were deployed to man the celebration of the Humangaya Festival.

“Nung nakita na suspicious nung nakita na sinisipa or inuusog yung bag sa ilalim  ng motorsiklo hinabol na itong taong ito but then lumalabas na meron pa syang kasama na rider na nagmamaneho doon sa isang motorsiklo sa may kanto ng may Honda so doon 
sila nakatakbo at hindi nahabol ng CAFGU at sumabog na from there yung IED,” the PNP Chief explained.

During a closed-door meeting with members of Police Regional Office 12 in Isulan, a facial composite sketch of the suspect was presented to Albayalde. The description shows a medium built male suspect of 5’6 to 5’7” in height.  He was wearing a black shirt and dark colored pants with a black backpack, based on the accounts of the three witnesses. — Lea Ylagan / Marje Pelayo


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‘Ompong’ death toll climbs to 81 – PNP

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Wednesday, September 19th, 2018

Aerial view of the housing community in Baggao, Cagayan, where Typhoon Ompong, internationally known as Super Typhoon Mangkhut made its first landfall

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The number of deaths in the wake of Typhoon Ompong has now risen to 81, based on the latest count from the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Records at the PNP National Operations Center in Camp Crame revealed that as of Wednesday morning (September 19), additional six deaths were recorded in the landslide area in Barangay Ucab in Itogon, Benguet, bringing the tally to 66 in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).

This brings the partial total count as follows:

CAR: 66

Cagayan Valley (Region 2): 10

Central Luzon (Region 3): 3

NCR: 2

Ilocos (Region 1): 1

Meanwhile, the number of missing persons is now at 70 with the following breakdown:

CAR: 66


Ilocos Region: 2

— UNTV News and Rescue

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Death toll rises to 74 in the wake of Typhoon Ompong

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Tuesday, September 18th, 2018

Aerial view of the housing community in Baggao, Cagayan, where Typhoon Ompong, internationally known as Super Typhoon Mangkhut made its first landfall


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Death toll continues to rise as a result of the strong Typhoon Ompong.

Based on the 9:00 a.m. count from the Philippine National Police (PNP) Operation Center, the number of fatalities already reached 74.

The highest number was recorded in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) with 60 fatalities from the Itogon landslide. Region 2 (Cagayan Valley) followed with 10 deaths; Region 3 (Central Luzon) with 2 and National Capital Region (NCR) with 1 death recorded.

Meanwhile, the number of missing persons spiked to 55. The CAR marked the highest number with 52; two in Cagayan Valley and one in Metro Manila.

The number of injured persons counted to 74. From the said number, 42 was recorded in CAR; 17 in Cagayan Valley; 12 in Ilocos Region; 2 in Metro Manila; and one Central Luzon.

PNP Spokesperson Benigno Durana Jr. said the rescue teams are working round the clock to help the residents in affected areas. Members of the Special Action Force (SAF), meanwhile, are concentrated in assisting other rescue workers in the landslide area in Barangay Ucab, Itogon, Benguet.

“Sabi nga ng CPNP we will not lose hope and with your prayers, we will not stop until the last of our fellow Filipinos will be accounted for para mabigyan naman sila ng karapat-dapat na libing ng kanilang mga pamilya,” Durana said.

Police personnel is also hands-on in the repacking of relief goods as well as in the clearing operations in affected areas.

“Bahagi rin ang ating mga kapulisan sa repacking centers sa mga relief and distribution centers para makapagbigay pa rin po tayo ng mga dagdag na serbisyo sa ating mga kababayan lalong lalo na yung mga nasalanta ng bagyong Ompong,” Durana added.

The official also emphasized that the PNP is ready to help in the investigation of local government executives who may have neglected their responsibilities in the course of Typhoon Ompong should the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) request for it.

“Sa ngayon wala pa naman kaming natanggap na utos patungkol po doon. But if the DILG want us to be involved, definitely, because the PNP is also under the DILG,” he added. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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Second blast hits an internet cafe in Isulan; kills 1, injures 15

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, September 3rd, 2018

Courtesy of JB Utto

SULTAN KUDARAT, Philippines – Barely a week after the explosion of an improvised explosive device (IED) in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat, the town was again horrified by another blast that ripped through an internet café on Sunday night (September 2).

The explosion left one teenager dead and injured 15 others; four of them in critical condition, according to Isulan Mayor Marites Pallasigue.

Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde on Sunday (September 2) expressed sympathy to the victims and their families and called the perpetrators “cowards.”

“We strongly condemn the attack on the people of Isulan. We are saddened by the casualties brought about by this cowardly act perpetrated by people hell bent on their nefarious goals without regard for lives of the civilians,” Albayalde said.

Due to the incident, the PNP maintains a full alert status in Mindanao while martial law is in effect. The PNP Chief said he already ordered the hardening of security measures in the region especially in checkpoints and intensified intelligence gathering.

“Makakaasa kayo na tutugisin namin at hindi po kami titigil hanggat hindi napapanagot ang may kagagawan nito. I have instructed our men on the ground to increase patrol, tighten security in the area, and intensify our cooperation with all other allied forces,” the PNP Chief assured.

Meanwhile, Malacañang also condemend the incident and assured that authorities have already launched an investigation as they “vow to bring the perpetrators of this brazen attack to justice.”

“We will apply the full force of the law,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque in a statement.

Prior to Sunday’s blast, an IED exploded along the national highway in Isulan on Tuesday night (August 28) coinciding with the town’s week long celebration of its 7th Hamungaya Festival. The incident killed three persons and injured at least 30 others. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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