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Philippines’ president’s hometown hit by deadly market blast

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An explosion killed at least 12 people and wounded at least 24 at a night market in President Rodrigo Duterte’s hometown in the southern Philippines, a region under a heightened security alert because of a military offensive against Abu Sayyaf militants, officials said.

Regional military commander Lt. Gen. Rey Leonardo Guerrero said it was not immediately clear what caused the explosion at a massage section of the market, which was cordoned off by police bomb experts and investigators.

Police Chief Superintendent Manuel Gaerlan said witnesses gave contrasting accounts, with some saying that a cooking gas tank exploded while others suggested it may have been some kind of an explosive. Police set up checkpoints in key roads leading to the city, a regional gateway about 980 kilometers (610 miles) south of Manila. – READ MORE

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