NYCFPA Statement on Recent Attacks in the Philippines

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Washington, DC – The New York Center for Foreign Policy Affairs is following the developments in the South Philippines as it is proving to be an increasing hotbed for Muslim militant and separatist violence.  On Monday, August 24th, the Associated Press reported Muslim militants allied with the Islamic State group set off a powerful motorcycle explosive followed by a suicide bombing that together killed 14 people on Monday, many of them soldiers, in the worst extremist attack in the Philippines this year.

The apparent suicide bomb and vehicle-born IED went off in the Southern provinces of Sulu in the town Indanan targeting state security forces. The blast has killed 16 people and injured 78, with 48 of those being civilians. The suspected bomber is the wife of the 2019 Cathedral Suicide Bombing, which left 20 people killed.

NYCFPA Principal Director states, “Our hearts go out to the great people of the Philippines, and especially those who suffered great loss as a result of this bombing.”

The attack comes at a time of heightened security after Anduljihad Indang Susukan, the Islamist leader of Abu Sayyaf, was arrested earlier this month. The attack has been called by the Filipino authorities a reprisal by the Islamic State aligned organization. Abu Sayyaf is an Islamist separatist terrorist organization with its roots in the Filipino Muslim Brigade that fought the Soviets in Afghanistan. The organization has been involved in kidnappings, beheadings, bombings, and insurrection across Jolo and the province of Mindanao since 1990 with cells operating in the capital of Manila. 

Russell continues, “The recent attack carried out by Abu Sayyaf is not only an act of cowardice, but gravely unnecessary and will only increase violence in the Philippines.  The world has condemned the use of explosives against civilian populations.”

The international community and the United Nations Security Council have called out the use of bombings in the south of the Philippines. Still, the region remains a hotbed for Islamist and separatist activity, which is evident by this latest attack on Philipino security forces and civilians. 

“While we believe that those who were involved with carrying out this senseless act of violence will be brought to justice, we also urge the Government in Manila to show vigilance with restraint. Violence cannot continue to beget violence.”

For press inquiries: info@nycfpa.org

About New York Center for Foreign Policy Affairs: The New York Center for Foreign Policy Affairs (NYCFPA) is a policy, research, and educational organization headquartered in New York State with an office in Washington D.C. NYCFPA is an independent, non-profit, non-partisan, institution devoted to conducting in-depth research and analysis on every aspect of American foreign policy and its impact around the world. The organization is funded by individual donors. The organization receives no corporate or government donations. The New York Center for Foreign Policy Affairs (NYCFPA) is currently conducting research on American foreign policy interests in the world’s hot zones and has forthcoming reports and educational briefings on: China, Russia, North Korea, Middle East, Latin America, and Africa. Their mission is to be an educational resource for policy makers and foreign policy leaders to best promote American interests and values around the world.

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