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Cops foil department store bombing attempt


GENERAL SANTOS CITY (PNA) – Police recovered an improvised explosive device (IED) that reportedly malfunctioned in an attempted attack in front of a department store in Koronadal City on Saturday night.
Supt. Benjiel Kirby Bajo, Koronadal City police chief, said the explosive was found inside a luminous green backpack that was left at the baggage counter of Unitop General Merchandise-Koronadal branch along Osmeña Street in Barangay Zone 2.
He said the store’s baggage attendant and security guard initially reported hearing a low-key explosion emanating from the backpack at around 8:25 p.m.
The official said responding personnel from the city police station and the South Cotabato police’s explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) unit discovered an improvised explosive device inside the back pack.
Bajo said it appeared that the suspects tried but failed to set the bomb off, which was successfully detonated by the team around 9 p.m.
A report from the EOD unit said the explosive was mainly composed of black powder, with an attached four-liter plastic mineral water bottle containing nails in various sizes.
It was connected to a 9-volt battery pack with red and black wires and a Samsung cellular phone as triggering device.
Investigators said its composition was similar to the bomb that exploded around noon beside the Christ the King Cathedral in Koronadal City last April 29 that injured two persons.
Bajo said investigators are currently determining the identity of the suspects through accounts from store personnel and other witnesses.
“Our investigators are looking into all possible angles and pursuing some leads based on the recovered information and evidences,” Bajo said.
The failed bomb attack happened as the city concluded on Saturday night the hosting of the week-long 2nd “Pyesta Kolon Datal: Koronadal International Folklore Festival.”
The festivity was joined by more than 200 cultural performers from eight foreign and five national contingents.