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Blast, gunfire mar LP sorties

Armed men detonated an improvised explosive device and indiscriminately fired their guns in two separate Liberal Party (LP) campaign sorties in Ilocos Sur and Sorsogon.

The first attack occurred at 10 p.m. on Wednesday in Barangay Comillas North in Cervantes town of Ilocos Sur where a campaign rally was being conducted led by Mayor Benjamin Maggay, the LP local bet.

The vice mayoral candidate, Robert Harnois, was reportedly addressing the crowd when an explosion was heard some 60 meters away from the area where the campaign rally was being held.

“There was no reported injury or property damaged. All the people in the crowd, including the candidates, are safe,” said Supt. Marlon Paiste, spokesman of the Ilocos regional police.

Almost an hour later in Sorsogon, a burst of gunfire was heard while the group of Vice Mayor Rolando Estopace, Sr. and his team were holding campaign sortie in Barangay Mapapac in Barcelona town.

The burst of gunfire was heard a few meters away from the Multi-Purpose auditorium, said Senior Insp. Maria Luisa Calubquib, Bicol regional police spokesperson.

“The incident caused panic and fear among the supporters and the candidates. Local police deployed to respond were able to recover 15 pieces of spent shells of .45 pistols,” said Calubquib.