The alleged mastermind of a bus explosion that left a 5-year-old dead and six other passengers injured in North Cotabato has been killed in an encounter, authorities said Saturday.
In a statement, the Philippine Army said the suspect identified as Norodin Hassan and three other assailants were killed in a manhunt operation Saturday.
Hassan was identified as the alleged “Emir for Military Affairs” of the terrorist Daulah Islamiya Hassan Group (DI-HG).
“The death of alias Andot and 3 of his cohort only shows that justice is given to the victims of the Mindanao Star Bus bombing,” said Major General Juvymax Uy, commander of the Joint Task Force Central and 6th Infantry Division.
On January 11, an explosive device was set off inside a Mindanao Star Bus along Aleosan’s national highway that morning. Of the seven victims, four were minors.
The 5-year-old passed away after being rushed to the hospital in critical condition.
The two other suspects who were killed in the encounter were identified as Abdonillah Hassan and Abdonhack Hassan. The identity of the third suspect has yet to be determined.
Multiple firearms and gadgets were seized at the scene of the operation.