RealNews

Philippines Says 16 Die in Three Rebel Attacks

Sixteen people have died in a rebel raid on a village in the southern Philippines and two bombings at an airport and a crowded market, the Philippines army said on Thursday. The military blamed the three attacks on Mindanao island on the country’s largest Muslim rebel group — the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) — which the Philippine government wants to resume peace talks with. The deadliest raid, in Tubud village where the army said rebels killed 14 people, is around 60 miles north of the site of joint U.S.-Philippine counter-terrorism exercises set for next week. The MILF, the largest of four Muslim separatist groups in the largely Roman Catholic country, denied involvement in the bombings but said there was a skirmish with troops in Tubud. The military said the attacks were linked to its bloody capture last weekend of a rebel stronghold in Cotabato province on Mindanao, 500 miles south of the capital. “These are all part of the MILF effort to show they are still around after they lost one of their camps,” army spokesman Major Julieto Ando told Reuters by telephone. The military said about 50 suspected MILF guerrillas attacked Tubud with machineguns and grenade launchers on Wednesday evening, burning 10 houses and shooting 14 residents. Full Story

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