(Update) Two improvised explosive devices (IED) went off in Maguindanao on Monday morning, killing two people and injuring at least five others, police and military officials said.

A “cellphone-triggered” IED went off in Sitio Layning, Brgy. Salvo, Datu Saudi Ampatuan, around 8:23 a.m., Senior Supt. Jaime Pido, Maguindanao Provincial Police director, said in a phone interview.

“Motorcycles usually pass by that area,” Pido said, adding the bomb was made of an 81-millimeter mortar ammunition and appeared “similar” to other IEDs that went off in the province in the past.

Minutes later, around 9 a.m., another bomb went off in the neighboring village of Brgy. Iginagampong, Datu Unsay, injuring six people, Pido said.

“Dalawa daw ‘yung namatay dun sa anim na wounded, yun ang sinabi sa akin ng chief of police ko dun sa Datu Unsay” Pido said when contacted Monday evening.

“Ayaw lang daw magbigay ng pangalan nung mga tao dun… pagkaputok, kinuha agad, dinala (‘yung mga bangkay),” he said.

The police official, however, confirmed that both fatalities were members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

Col. Prudencio Asto, spokesman of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, said one Basit Abas alias Basco, a member of the BIFF, was hit by shrapnel on the face in the blast in Brgy. Salvo.

Abas, along with other BIFF members under Mohaiden Animbang alias Karialan were passing through the area on motorcycles when the bomb exploded.

Animbang and his men were on the way to attend a “kanduli” or thanksgiving event hosted by a certain Tong in Brgy. Iginagampong, Asto said.

The explosion prompted the BIFF members to fired their guns at different directions for two minutes before they resumed their travel, he said.

However, as the group was nearing the “kanduli” venue in Sitio Kalot, Brgy. Iginagampong, another IED made of an 81-millimeter mortar exploded.

Karialan and five followers of a certain Tambako were hit in the second explosion, Asto said.

Meanwhile, Pido said the thanksgiving event in Brgy. Iginagampong is different from another “kanduli” that Mayor Zahara Ampatuan of neighboring Shariff Aguak was set to hold in her town on Tuesday. (John Roson)

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