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MANILA, Philippines – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said Monday, February 12, that military personnel killed during a January 2024 operation in Lanao del Sur Khadafi Mimbesa, the alleged mastermind of a deadly blast in Marawi City.
In a statement, the AFP said Mimbesa was a “perpetrator” of the bombing at the Marawi State University (MSU) campus which killed at least four and injured scores more.
Mimbesa, as well as “local terrorists and armed members of the Dawlah Islamiyah,” was killed during an operation from January 25 to 26 in Lanao del Sur led by the 103rd Brigade of the Philippine Army.
The AFP said Mimbesa’s identity was confirmed through a “surrendered terrorist” identified as “Khatab” who had yielded to the 2nd Mechanized Brigade only on February 11. The military said Khatab’s statements “corroborated the initial information on the demise of the DI-Maute Group Amir and the mastermind behind the MSU bombing.”
It was in early December 2023 that an explosion occurred at the MSU campus in Marawi City, just as Mass was being held in its gymnasium. President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said “foreign terrorists” were behind the attack.
Philippine security and defense officials earlier pointed to recent government campaigns against the ISIS-inspired terrorist Dawlah Islamiyah in different parts of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao as a motive for bombing the MSU Marawi campus. – Rappler.com