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Marcos blames foreign terrorists

PRESIDENT Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Sunday denounced the bombing at the Mindanao State University in Marawi City that killed at least four people in an attack that Malacañang blamed on foreign terrorists.

«I condemn in the strongest possible terms the senseless and most heinous acts perpetrated by foreign terrorists upon the Mindanao State University (MSU) and Marawi communities early this Sunday morning. Extremists who wield violence against the innocent will always be regarded as enemies to our society,» Marcos said in a statement.

He gave assurances that assistance would be extended to the bombing victims.

Initial investigation showed the explosion shook the MSU gymnasium where a Catholic Mass was being held to celebrate the Mindanao Week of Peace.

The Palace said the government is working closely with the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and concerned local government units for a swift response to what Marcos considered the «latest assault on peace.»

Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. vowed to go after the people behind the bombing.

«Such a barbaric act has no room in a humane, civilized, peaceful society,» Galvez said in a statement.

«Rest assured that the Marcos administration will not leave any stone unturned to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to the bar of justice,» he said.

Galvez said the attack showed the «ruthless methods that lawless elements will utilize to sow fear, anger, and animosity among our people.»

Galvez extended his condolences and prayers to the families of the victims and the students and faculty of MSU.

«May you have the strength and courage to cope with the painful loss of your loved ones and carry on in the face of this immense tragedy,» he said.

Galvez said the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity (Opapru) is now in touch with BARMM leaders so that they can provide the necessary assistance to the victims and their families.

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has been placed on heightened alert following the MSU bombing.

PCG Commandant Adm. Ronnie Gil Gavan said in a statement he has ordered that all PCG districts be placed on