Police say Quiapo blast not ASEAN-related

MANILA — The head of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) on Friday said the Quiapo explosion has nothing to do with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Leaders Summit that will commence today at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.

Chief Superintendent Oscar Albayalde, NCRPO chief, in a radio interview, said they see no threat to the ongoing Asean activities after a grenade exploded along Quezon Boulevard, near the Quiapo church at around 10:49 p.m. Friday that left 12 people injured.

“Hindi po siya major explosion dahil walang namatay pero may mga nasugatan,” Albayalde was quoted as saying.

According to Albayalde, initial reports showed eyewitnesses saw two motorcycle-riding men lobbed something in the area a few seconds before the explosion.

He added that the explosion is believed to have stemmed out from a gang war in the area.

Investigators, he said, are now coordinating with the barangay to secure a copy of the CCTV footage.

Manolo Jeremias, official of Barangay 391 in Manila, said the explosion caused dismembered body parts of two victims.

The victims were brought to the Jose Reyes Medical Center, Mary Chiles General Hospital and Ospital ng Sampaloc.

Members of the police’s Explosive and Ordnance Disposal are now conducting further investigation. Lilybeth Ison and Priam Nepomuceno/PNA-northboundasia.com