DAVAO CITY: A bomb explosion inside a bus has killed one passenger and left about 30 wounded in a daring attack on Friday in Zamboanga City, police and government officials said.
Police said the bomb ripped through the bus owned by Biel Transit at a terminal in downtown Zamboanga at around 2.15 p.m.
“I condemned this heinous crime and ordered police and military to tighten security as we investigate this blast,” said Zamboanga City Mayor Beng Climaco.
No individual or group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but authorities initially pointed to failed extortion as the likely motive for the bombing, which occurred near a police base.
Based on the initial police report, there were 30 people injured and the lone female casualty has not yet been identified.
The mayor appealed to citizens to stay calm, but vigilant.
After the blast and the people’s fear that there may be more attacks, businessmen decided to close their shops and department stores.
Soldiers and policemen continued to secure the bus terminal to search if there could be more bombs and to clear out debris.
This is the second time that the bus firm Biel Transit, had been bombed.
In September 2013, a bomb exploded in one of its buses at a terminal in Labuan village leaving three people killed.
The improvised explosive was planted under a seat and then detonated as the bus entered the terminal.
The authorities are still conducting an investigation to identify the perpetrators of the latest attack. But the notorious bandit group, Abu Sayyaf, had previously bombed civilian targets in Zamboanga City.