Terror threatens city crossroads

Dumaguete being in the center cross-roads from Mindanao sea to the Visayas, is raising its alert security level against possible Davao-like terrorist acts. Thus, the Philippine Army is helping secure the streets of Dumaguete against terrorist possibilities.

Intelligence funds of local officials are being fanned out to gather and pre-empt information that might endanger our security.

Because of Dumaguete’s proximity to the Zamboanga peninsula with presence of terror groups and as the crossroad of Luzon and Mindanao islands, the city is on high alert to thwart any possible Davao-type attack.

The Philippine Army has stationed a platoon of soldiers from the 79th Infantry Battalion in the city to assist the Philippine National Police in joint patrols and checkpoints to boost security of the capital city.

1st Lt. Eidherf S. Cruz, who briefed the members of the City Peace and Order Council presided by Mayor Felipe “Ipe” Remollo, Thursday, added that there is a need to develop a security plan vs. terror attacks and conduct simulation exercises to gauge the readiness of the authorities to prevent and foil bomb threats.

Underscoring the seriousness of the threat, the organizers of the 2016 International Coastal Cleanup day decided to “cancel all activities, preparations and plans in all parts of the country due to intelligence reports as to the existence of threats of further acts of violence.”

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources interposed no objection to the cancellation “in the interest of public safety and security” to prevent “interested groups from taking advantage of the nationwide activities to sow terror in order to gain international media mileage.”

City Chief-of-Police Supt. Jovito Atanacio assures that the security of resorts, vital installations, public buildings, communication facilities and malls considered have been intensified pursuant to the target hardening strategy.

Coordination among enforcement and security agencies has also been strengthened with frequent patrols and visibility by the Philippine Coast Guard on shallow waters; Philippine Navy on deep sea; maritime police for ports and PNP for the inland communities.

“We are also closely monitoring the entry of all vehicles from Luzon and Mindanao to prevent contraband and explosives from slipping past security,” Atanacio stressed.

Both the PNP and Army urge civilians to help the authorities by reporting suspicious activities and personalities that may engage in terrorism for validation and appropriate action.

Nevertheless, no serious and validated threat from the international fundamentalist group ISIL has been reported.

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