Seven members of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) and two military troops were injured in a suspected improvised explosive device (IED) blast in Marawi City on Tuesday, which has been seen by experts as a "possible diversionary tactic by the Maute group", an Islamist terrorist group in Mindanao.
Confirming the information military's Western Mindanao Command (WESMINCOM) spokesperson Major Filemon Tan said among these victims, one PSG member and one soldier are critically injured, reported CNN.
The critically injured victims were airlifted to the Fourth Infantry Division headquarters in Cagayan De Oro City, while three others were shifted to a hospital.
Deputy Brigade Commander of the 103rd Brigade Col. Gene Ponio said the personnel were part of a convoy of the President's advance party in Marawi.
At least 50 people were part of the convoy, including personnel from Presidential Broadcast Staff Radio-Television Malacañang (RTVM) and military escorts, said Ponio.
Ponio said the incident may be a diversionary tactic by the Maute group, an Islamist terrorist group in Mindanao. The Maute group is facing an intense military offensive after it laid siege to Butig town in Lanao Del Sur last week.
The advance party was preparing for the scheduled visit of President Rodrigo Duterte in the province on Wednesday. However, there is no word yet if the President's visit will still push through.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)