Multiple deaths in night market explosion in Philippines - officials
Varied casualty tolls have been reported as the number of victims has risen. At least 12 are dead and 60 are injured, according to officials.
Reported explosion in Davao City Friday night left a number of people dead and several others wounded.... https://t.co/AZY5MI7O1y— DavaoCity Government (@DavaoCityGov) September 2, 2016
Video of ambulance pic.twitter.com/BoIcRv5non— Fr. Jboy Gonzales SJ (@jboygonzalessj) September 2, 2016
Check left side: ambulance, people on stretchers. pic.twitter.com/CHWOwVBR2o— Fr. Jboy Gonzales SJ (@jboygonzalessj) September 2, 2016
More photos. People covered in blood. pic.twitter.com/WT4XqPtcAs— Fr. Jboy Gonzales SJ (@jboygonzalessj) September 2, 2016
The blast occurred at about 10:20pm local time, in the massage parlor area of the Roxas Night Market, a hotspot in the city of 1.6 million people, and near the upmarket Marco Polo hotel.
Eyewitnesses have reported a single loud blast, followed by billowing smoke. Ambulances arrived at the chaotic scene within minutes.
Police say that the explosive was a homemade device, filled with shrapnel.
“Rest assured the authorities are on top of this incident. Right now, we cannot yet give a definite answer as to who is behind this,” said Paolo Duterte, vice mayor of Davao and son of the current president.
Just In : Explosion in Davao City— EMY LoveToMiho (@emilificent16) September 2, 2016
Keep safe everyone
Ctto Arci Arsi pic.twitter.com/cVfUmGHDuA
Davao Police Spokes Milgrace Driz says 25 casualties brought to Southern Philippine Medical Center (SPMC) after explosion in Roxas St.— Mariz Umali (@marizumali) September 2, 2016
President Duterte was due to customarily fly into the city for the weekend around the time of the blast, and has often visited the Marco Polo Hotel, but was not near the site of the explosion when the explosion rang out. He spent the next several hours at a nearby police station.
Duterte, who has gained notoriety for his violent war on drugs, was recently targeted in an assassination plot, according to Philippines police.
More photos: now in front of Ateneo de Davao Roxas Ave gate is this scene: pic.twitter.com/nasMvoJrRI— Fr. Jboy Gonzales SJ (@jboygonzalessj) September 2, 2016
Tens of thousands of the country’s citizens have died in recent decades at the hands of militant far-left, Muslim, and ethnic minority groups.
Although it is considered a relatively safe city, Davao is located on the island of Mindanao, the heart of the separatist movement of the Moro people, who espouse Islam. Duterte has promised to reach a diplomatic compromise with the movement, but has also threatened retribution against those forces who use violence.