After CBCP rally, PNP prepares for Rizal Day bombing anniversary
() - December 19, 2006 - 12:00am
Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Calderon ordered police nationwide yesterday to be on the look out for criminals and terrorists who might take advantage of the holiday season.

"We should not let our guard down, every policeman should protect every citizen from criminals and ensure that every community is peaceful and orderly," he said.

Calderon instructed National Capital Regional Police Office commander Director Reynaldo Varilla to gather information about criminal groups and prevent them from carrying out attacks like that of the Dec. 30, 2000 Rizal Day bombings that killed a number of people.

Checkpoints will be set up in strategic points throughout the country, he added.

Caldron has launched Task Group Motorcycle Anti-Street Crime Operatives to go after criminals, especially those riding on motorcycles.

The Metro Manila police under Varilla have yet to make a significant accomplishment on street crimes, particularly cell phone snatchings, which have been rampant in crowded areas in Quiapo and the university belt in Manila.

Five different places in Metro Manila were bombed on Rizal Day on Dec. 30, 2000.

The bombings occurred within a span of a few hours, killing 22 people and injuring about a hundred others.

One of the bombs exploded at Plaza Ferguson, less than a hundred meters from the United States Embassy in Manila.

The second explosion occurred inside a coach of the Light Rail Transit on Blumentritt street in Manila, where more than 10 people were killed.

The third bombing target was at a gasoline station in Makati’s central business district, where a policeman was killed.

The fourth bomb was detonated near the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City, while the fifth explosion took place in a moving bus in Cubao, Quezon City.

Authorities implicated various groups in the bombings, including the Indonesia-based terrorists group Jemaah Islamiyah, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, and the Moro National Liberation Front. — Cecille Suerte Felipe, James Mananghaya

CECILLE SUERTE FELIPE DIRECTOR GENERAL OSCAR CALDERON DIRECTOR REYNALDO VARILLA JAMES MANANGHAYA JEMAAH ISLAMIYAH LIGHT RAIL TRANSIT METRO MANILA MORO ISLAMIC LIBERATION FRONT MORO NATIONAL LIBERATION FRONT NATIONAL CAPITAL REGIONAL POLICE OFFICE RIZAL DAY
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