ZAMBOANGA, Philippines – Philippine’s security forces confirmed the destruction of Spasky lodging house in Basilan in an explosion by alleged terrorist of Abu Sayyaf group, which has also links with Al-Qaeda and is on the U.S. list of terrorist organizations.
There are no immediate reports of any loss of life in the explosion but rescue operations are still underway, as emergency team is searching the debris of the lodging house for possible victims.
Col. Alex Macario, provincial army commander, told that Spasky lodging house in Basilan province's Lamitan Township is "totally collapsed"; while security forces have found and disposed off a second homemade bomb minutes later near the Sofia hotel in Isabela City, the provincial capital, as police and soldiers set up security checkpoints.
Reportedly, before the Spasky blast two suspected men, believed to be members of Abu Sayyaf group, checked-in but immediately left the lodge after paying and the blast happened minutes later.
The blast came about a week after Philippine marines killed three suspected Abu Sayyaf fighters on Jolo. Intelligence reports suggest the group is targeting hotels and gasoline stations, Macario said.