The bombing that took place on Saturday in the town of Datu Piang in this province is a possible “hate crime” against members of the LGBT community, according to a spokesperson of the local military unit.
“We found out na itong mga kabataan na miyembro ng LGBT sa Datu Piang ay naka-receive ng death threats from BIFF-Karialan faction, na sila ay binabantaan na sasaktan ng nasabing grupo kung hindi nila ide-denounce yung kanilang affiliation sa LGBT,” said 6th Infantry Division spokesperson Lt. Col. John Paul Baldomar.
(We found out that these young LGBT members in Datu Piang have received death threats from the BIFF-Karialan faction, that they are threatening to be harmed by the said group if they do not denounce their LGBT affiliation.)
Eight individuals were injured after bombing a covered court in Datu Piang plaza during a volleyball tournament on Saturday afternoon.
Six were admitted to the hospital, of which one was in critical condition.
The other two had scars and minor wounds.
The victims were members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community.
LGBT community members possible target bombing in Maguindanao
Baldomar said the pursuit of BIFF members continues, with operations continuing in some towns in Maguindanao since recent months.
Last week, the Japanese embassy confirmed that their government had received information about a possible terrorist attack in Southeast Asia, including the Philippines.
“We confirm that the Japanese government has received information about a possible terror attack, but we cannot give you any detailed background at the moment,” according to a statement released by the Japanese Embassy on Tuesday.
“In relation to this, we issued a warning to alert Japanese people residing in some Southeast Asian countries, but we cannot disclose the source,” it added.
Japan issued a notice for its compatriots to warn of possible terrorist attacks in six Southeast Asian countries — the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Myanmar.
They reminded their countrymen to avoid “Western-owned” facilities, such as hotels, restaurants, and religious sites.
“We ask all Japanese residents to remain vigilant against terrorist attacks,” it said.