Agri Finance Chief Escapes Death In South RP

November 16, 2007 at 10:29 pm | Posted in 1 | Leave a comment

COTABATO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Nov. 16, 2007) – Police mounted a massive search Friday for two men who tried to kill an agriculture official in the southern Philippines, police and government media said.

One of the men lobbed a grenade on a car carrying Osmeña Montanier, finance chief of the Department of Agriculture in Mindanao. The grenade failed to explode, police said.

Police said Montanier was on his way to office in Cotabato City at around 1.30 p.m. when one of two men on motorcycle tossed the grenade into the car, but it hit the tire and rolled to the pavement.

No group claimed responsibility for the failed assassination. Cotabato City is one of the most dangerous places in Mindanao where extra-judicial killings were not uncommon.

Cotabato City has been previously attacked and police and military authorities blamed Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiya terrorists and rebels for the spate of bombings that left dozens of people dead over the past years. Aside from terrorists and rebels, extortion syndicates also operate in Cotabato City, once tagged by the United States as a “doormat” of terrorists in the southern Philippines.

The tag caused the suspension of a P54-million road project funded by the US Agency for International Development, saying, terrorist and rebel groups might use the project for their illegal activities.

Several foreigners with alleged links to al-Qaeda terror network had been arrested in Cotabato City in the past. (Mindanao Examiner)

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