ZAMBOANGA CITY – Sulu Governor Toto Tan on Monday joined a worldwide condemnation of the series of deadly suicide attacks on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka over the weekend.
At least 290 people were killed in the coordinated attacks on Easter Sunday in various areas in the largely Buddhist island country in South Asia.
Tan, whose province in southern Philippines was also targeted by ISIS suicide bombers in January that killed over a dozen people, branded the Sri Lanka attacks as “terroristic carnage” and called for sobriety.
“Let sobriety prevail in these troubled and trying times. Let not emotions fuel the embers of religious divide,” he said.
“We join the rest of humanity in condemning in the strongest of terms the Easter Sunday terroristic carnage in Sri Lanka. We do feel the anger and the sufferings of such dastardly acts as we are still reeling from the January 27, 2019 blasts in Jolo Cathedral when the lives of 20 peaceful churchgoing fellow Tausug were sacrificed while attending Sunday Mass,” he added.
Tan said he and the people of Sulu “join the global call to reveal the perpetrators of these condemnable acts and let justice prevail.”
The governor’s father, Sakur Tan, a well-respected political leader and philanthropist, also condemned the bombings and said: “There are no words extreme enough to condemn these latest acts of terrorism. We dread to entertain thoughts that the incidences aforementioned, are meant to drive a wedge between peoples of diverse faiths. We condole with the bereaved families and the people and government of Sri Lanka. Let us stand united against any form of violence and acts of terror,” he said.
ISIS or the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, claimed responsibility for the deadly twin cathedral blasts in Jolo town and was carried out by a pair of suspected Indonesian couple.
ISIS, in a statement released by its Amaq News Agency, said the first bomber detonated an explosive belt, while the second attacker blew himself up outside the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Cathedral over the weekend and killing and wounding dozens of people, including soldiers deployed in the area.
In Zamboanga City, Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco Salazar also condemned the suicide attacks in Sri Lanka and ordered policemen and soldiers to tighten their security in places of worships here. “We condemned the Sri Lanka bombings and our sympathy goes out to the families of those who perished in the carnage,” she told The Zamboanga Post by phone. (The Zamboanga Post)
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