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UPDATED: 17:18, August 28, 2005
Abu Sayyaf stages bomb attack on ferry in southern Philippines: official
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The Abu Sayyaf group was the perpetrator of a blast which injured 30 people Sunday morning on a ferry in Basilan island, southern Philippines, said a Philippine official.

The vice mayor of Lamitan town where the blast took place, Jimmy Andong, told local media that the blast was the handiwork of Abu Sayyaf bandits, who were disguised as fishermen.

Lamitan police also confirmed that a homemade bomb, instead of a gas tank as was earlier reported by the military, ripped through the kitchen portion of the M/V Dona Ramona around 07:00 a.m. local time Sunday morning.

The vessel, which was docked at the Lamitan wharf in Basilan, was scheduled to depart for Zamboanga City.

Most of the victims were taken to a hospital in Zamboanga City,said officials.

A spokesman for the Philippine Armed Forces Southern Command said earlier that a liquefied petroleum gas tank exploded while the ferry was docked at the Dangkalan Wharf in Lamitan town.

Basilan is a known lair of the Abu Sayyaf, a bandit group believed to have links to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

The Abu Sayyaf, with the help of the southeast Asian terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah, firebombed a ferry off Manila Bay in February 2004 and bombed the cities of Makati, Davao, and General Santos a year later.

The two attacks left over 100 people killed and hundreds others injured.

Source: Xinhua

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