The Defense department on Sunday called on the public to continue its vigilance following the bomb attack on the tactical command post of the 1st Brigade Combat Team in Kajatian village in Indanan, Sulu, that killed eight people”•including three soldiers”•and wounded 22 others on June 28.
“The DND calls for continued vigilance in light of the recent bombings in Sulu that led to the very unfortunate loss of lives, both civilian and military,” Defense spokesman Arsenio Andolong said in a statement.
“We extend our sympathies to the victims of this heinous act and vow to hunt down those who are responsible.”
Andolong said Friday’s attack highlighted the need for the public and the security sector to work together to counter violent extremism in the communities.
“As a nation, we must be adamant in our rejection of foreign extremist ideologies that aim to invalidate our gains toward achieving just and lasting peace in the country, particularly in Mindanao,” Andolong said.
He said government forces were investigating the incident and would not stop until the suspects were arrested.
Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief Benjamin Madrigal visited the troops of the IBCT to assess the situation aside from inspecting the blast site.
He was accompanied by newly appointed Western Mindanao Command chief Cirilito Sobejana.
Madrigal also visited the troops wounded in the attack at the Camp Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital in Jolo.
There, he awarded the Wounded Personnel Medal to wounded members of the 1BCT.
“We condemn the latest bombing in Jolo that victimized not only our soldiers but also civilians who were in the vicinity of the blast,” Madrigal said.
“Targeting soldiers and civilians whose only intention is to provide security and maintain peace in the communities is a cowardly act and deserves condemnation in the strongest terms possible.”
Madrigal said the three soldiers who died in the blast did not die in vain as they were able to prevent the bomber from entering the camp, thus saving many lives.
The second bomber was also neutralized by troops before he was able to get inside the billeting area, resulting in the wounding of the other troops.
“We commiserate with the relatives of our troops and the civilians and we assure the wounded personnel of the best medical attention,” Madrigal said.