"the best post on the subject [of the Stockwell shooting] so far and I agree. A must read." - Tim Worstall, August 21, 2005

"Chris at Optimus In Omnis wrote a thoughtful post in July...his more recent post describes the edginess many Londoners feel" - BBC News Online, August 22, 2005

Sunday, August 28, 2005

"Muslim insurgents" to blame for ferry bomb, injuring 30

An improvised explosive device placed next to containers filled with Liquified Petroleum Gas tore through a ferry docked at a port in the Philippines, just hours after the Philippines national security advisor said that a terrorist cell numbering ten people willing to act as suicide bombers was currently making their home in the capital, with two known to be residing in Manilla, the nations' capital city.

The perpetrators of the attack are believed to be either Al'Qaeda operatives, or the more localised branch of terrorists named Abu Sayyaf. The ten terrorists believed to be in the country are affiliated to the Jemaah Islamiyah group of terrorists, who make their home in Indonesia and have strong connections to Al'Qaeda. The Philippines acts as a stop-off for money traffickers who travel from the Middle Eastern states towards the West, where the funds go towards creating terrorist missions in mainland Europe and North America. All three terrorist groups are believed to be working together, with strong ties towards bringing down the vast majority of the population in the Philippines, 92% of whom are Roman Catholic or Protestant. Only five percent of the Philippino population are practising Muslims.

Of the thirty people injured, six have serious burns, and nine children were amongst the casualties. One of those who suffered the most serious burns injuries was an armed soldier posted to watch guard over the passengers entering the ferry with any weapons. A UH-1H helicopter transported the most seriously injured to nearby hospitals, while less serious ailments were treated near the scene.

The port itself was only opened days earlier, having been built using money from the United States, by US Affairs Secretary to the Philippines Darryl Johnson. It is not yet known whether the attack was aimed specifically at an American-funded port or if it was a more generalised attack, the likes of which have haunted the Philippines this year, including an attack not more than eighteen days ago, which injured 26. Three of the bombers on that day were released less than a week before this latest incident. This believed same group was also responsible for the 2002 attack on a Bali nightclub which killed over 200, many of whom were tourists.


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