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Country profile for Philippines

Provided Courtesy of Security Exchange 24

Risk Rating

Unselected
Red (High Risk) InTouch advice:

Most parts of the country are dangerous.

Do not travel unless absolutely necessary.

Amber (Moderate Risk)
Amber (Moderate Risk) InTouch advice:

Some parts of the country are dangerous.

Travel with caution.

Unselected
Green (Low Risk) InTouch advice:

Most parts of the country are safe.

Travel freely.

General Information

  • Capital: Manila
  • Major Languages: Filipino, Spanish, English
  • Currency: Peso
  • Timezone: GMT +8:00

Country Map

Map of Philippines

In May 2016, hard-line candidate Rodrigo Duterte was elected as the 16th President of the Philippines. One of his key election pledges was to destroy drug trafficking networks in the country, and shortly after taking office he launched a ‘war on drugs’ which has proven to be highly controversial. An estimated 3,000 people were killed in his first six months of his administration - a third by the security forces and two-thirds by suspected vigilantes. The crackdown has sparked international criticism of Duterte, particularly in relation to extrajudicial killings, while former hitmen claim the president ordered murders while he was mayor of Davao city. He has also insulted a variety of world leaders and international bodies, including the European Union and the United Nations, and risks isolating the Philippines from several of its long-standing allies. The new president’s approach has not been popular with investors and both the peso and stock markets had fallen to a seven-year low by the end of September 2016. Meanwhile, the Philippines is one of several south-east Asian states currently in dispute with China over territorial rights in the South China Sea. In July 2016, the Philippines won a tribunal at the Hague; however, China has refused to accept the court's authority.

One of the drivers behind Duterte’s domestic popularity is his commitment to reducing the high levels of crime in the country. The Philippine National Police (PNP) has already stated that the number of reported crimes has fallen significantly since the war on drugs began. In the Metro Manila area, petty crimes such as bag snatching and pick-pocketing are common, while in the south of the country violent crime is more of a concern. Taxi drivers have also been complicit in assaults and robberies against passengers. Criminal and terrorist groups carry out kidnappings and extortion attempts against businesses operating in the south, most notably local bus operators and foreign mining companies. In January 2017, a South Korean businessman was abducted and held for ransom by three corrupt police officers in Angeles City, Central Luzon. Initial ransom demands of eight million pesos ($170,800) were paid in two instalments; however, another demand of an additional 4.5 million pesos ($90,000) was not paid after the kidnappers failed to provide proof of life.

The Philippines has a long history of insurgency by Muslim separatists. The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) has been fighting for independence in 25 southern provinces since 1972. The area, known locally as Bangsamoro, is spread over the islands of Mindanao, Palawan and the Sulu archipelago. Other former factions of the MNLF are also fighting for independence for the region, most notably the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the extremist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and the smaller Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). In September 2013, a group of around 500 MNLF fighters launched an attack on Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines. More than 250 people were killed in the three-week siege, while more than 100,000 civilians were forced to flee the city until the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) managed to defeat the rebels and restore order.

In March 2014, a historic peace deal was signed after almost two decades of negotiations between the government and the MILF leadership. The Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) provides greater political autonomy for the Bangsamoro region of Mindanao in exchange for MILF abandoning its armed resistance. However, the deal was almost derailed by the killing of 44 members of the Special Action Forces (SAF) during clashes with MILF and BIFF fighters in Mindanao in January 2015. At the same time, a political deadlock in the Filipino parliament and their failure to pass the Bangsamoro Basic Law also threatened the long-term viability of the agreement. The MNLF signed a peace agreement, known as the Jakarta Accord, with the government in the 1990s, but this has never been fully implemented. In January 2019, a referendum supported by the MILF saw the region vote in favour of creating the semi-autonomous Bangsamoro region, paving the way for the MILF to establish self-rule in cooperation with the Filipino government. Just days after the referendum results, a twin bomb attack targeted a Roman Catholic cathedral on Jolo island, killing at least 20 people. The Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for the attack, via the IS-affiliated ASG. Jolo is an island in the Sulu province of Mindanao, where voters were predominantly opposed to the creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in majority-Muslim areas.

In recent years, the ASG has been responsible for the majority of the most extreme violence in the southern Philippines, including the kidnapping and killing of foreign nationals and journalists. The group have previously received funding from al-Qaeda and in 2014 the ASG leadership pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (IS). In September 2015, the group kidnapped four people from a resort near Davao city. Two of the hostages, Canadians Robert Hall and John Ridsdel, were beheaded by the group in Jolo in 2016 before Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad was released in September following the reported payment of a $630k ransom. Dozens of sailors have also been kidnapped by ASG and held for ransom in the southern island provinces of Sulu and Basilan. In November 2016, six Vietnamese crewmen were abducted by the ASG off the coast of Coco Island in Basilan. As of August 2017, two of the six Vietnamese hostages have been rescued while three have been killed and one remains in captivity. Since 2010 the group are estimated to have received more than $10m in ransom and extortion payments. 

Other IS-loyalist groups - such as the Maute Group - have also become increasingly active in parts of the Philippines over the last few years. In May 2017, the Maute Group, with assistance with militants from the ASG, stormed Marawi City in Mindanao, taking hold of the city and forcing thousands of people to evacuate. In response to the militant siege, President Duterte declared martial law in the area while the Filipino government forces launched a counter-offensive to regain the territory. The government forces have gradually pushed the Islamist militants out of most parts of the city; however, many civilians had already been killed or taken hostage by the militants. As of August 2017, the total number of militants killed in Marawi is thought to be around 548, while at least 122 security personnel and 45 civilians have also been killed.

Several Maoist rebel groups - including the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), its armed wing the New People's Army (NPA), and the National Democratic Front (NDF) - have been fighting the Filipino government since the late 1960s. By 2015 at least 40,000 people had been killed in more than four decades of conflict, including thousands of civilians. The NPA continues to target the country's security forces throughout the country, including in the capital. After Duterte was elected president, he declared a unilateral ceasefire with the rebels and pledged to end the conflict by the end of his six-year term. However, the ceasefire was terminated in February 2017 - leading to a period of violence. Peace talks were opened again in June 2017; however, negotiations broke down amid an escalation in violent NPA attacks.

The Philippines is regularly affected by strong weather systems, most notably tropical typhoons. In November 2013, the country was hit by Typhoon Haiyan, which was the most powerful to ever make landfall in the Philippines. It was also the deadliest, killing at least 6,000 people and affecting an estimated 11 million others. The country is usually hit by several deadly typhoons during each monsoon season, which typically runs between May and November. Typhoon Mangkhut passed over the Philippines in September 2018, before going on to hit parts of China and Hong Kong. The storm was the equivalent of a category 5 hurricane, causing severe widespread disruption and killing 127 in the Philippines and 134 people overall. Just months later, Tropical Depression Usman killed 87 people as it hit parts of Luzon and the Visayas in late-December. The monsoon season also heightens the risk of flash floods and landslides. In July 2017, evacuation orders were issued to over 100,000 people as floods swept across the Cotabato region. The Philippines is also vulnerable to earthquakes; in October 2013, more than 200 people were killed when a 7.2-magnitude earthquake hit the island province of Bohol in Central Visayas. 

The country is among a number worldwide which have been hit by the global outbreak of the Covid-19 coronavirus. The latest case figures can be viewed here.

News articles

By The Standard

Pagadian journalist shot dead

Gunmen have shot dead a local radio reporter in Mindanao, one of the most dangerous countries for media workers in the world, police and an industry watchdog said Wednesday.

By Philippine Star

Bohol radio anchor shot dead

A radio broadcaster in Tagbilaran City, Bohol, died yesterday afternoon after being shot by a lone gunman.

By Mindaneo Examiner

Journalist killed in the Philippines

A lone gunman shot dead a female journalist in a daring attack Thursday in Bataan province just outside Manila in the Philippines, media groups reported.

By Inquirer.net

Radio journalist killed in the Philippines

Police authorities here had confirmed that the killing of broadcaster Samuel Oliverio on Friday was because of his work as a media man.

Supt. Querubin Manalang, city police director, said this was confirmed after the two attackers of the 57-year-old broadcaster were positively identified by witnesses.

By CPJ

In Philippines, tabloid reporter shot dead in her home

Authorities in the Philippines must conduct a thorough and efficient investigation into the murder of a local reporter on Sunday and do their utmost to bring the perpetrators to justice, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. 

View all articles for Philippines

Alerts for Philippines

Police officer killed in North Cotabato shootout

A Filipino police officer has allegedly been killed in a recent shootout in North Cotabato. The incident occurred on Thursday morning at around 07:445 local time, in the Arakan area, where police were attempting to serve an arrest warrant to an individual wanted on charges of murder. However, upon being apprehended by the police, the suspect became violent and resisted arrest, opening fire on the police and triggering a fatal exchange of fire which has left one police officer and the suspect dead.

Two NPA militants arrested in Surigao del Norte

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants have allegedly been arrested during security operations in the Mainit area of Surigao del Norte. The arrests were reportedly made earlier this week and were announced on Friday following the completion of investigations in the area. According to reports, one of the detained is understood to be among the most wanted criminals in the Surigao del Norte region.

Anti-government protest held in Manila

An anti-government protest has been staged in the capital city of Manila. Hundreds of people reportedly attended the demonstration, which was held on Mendiola Street on Wednesday morning, with officials placing estimates at around 200 participants. The protest had been organised to rally against government policies and to call for justice for detained activist Reine Mae Nasino. Protesters are also calling for President Rodrigo Duterte to be ousted from power. The demonstration marked the country's National Day of Defiance. The Presidential Palace has allegedly urged protesters to avoid demonstrations in the interest of public health amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

NPA hideout found in Agusan del Norte

A suspected New People's Army (NPA) hideout has reportedly been discovered in Agusan del Norte. The hideout is believed to have been abandoned and was found in a remote forested area near Sitio Fatima of Barangay Ibuan in the Las Nieves area during an army operation. According to reports, bomb-making materials were discovered at the hideout and later seized by the security forces.

Non-essential foreign travel resumed

Non-essential foreign travel has been resumed in the Philippines as of Wednesday 21 October. The lifting of the ban on non-essential travel to foreign countries comes as the Philippines continues to report a decline in daily coronavirus figures. Travellers will be required to produce round trip receipts and to undergo Covid-10 testing and sign a declaration acknowledging travel risks prior to departure.

Deadly shooting reported in Manila

A deadly shooting has been reported in the Tondo area of Manila. One person was reportedly shot dead after an argument broke out between the victim and the killer. It's understood the dispute took place overnight in Barangay 120, where police later arrested a suspect following the shooting. The police are still searching for two other suspects wanted in connection with the case.

Three killed in Isabela jailbreak

Three deaths have been reported following an apparent jailbreak at Basilan Provincial Jail in Isabela City. The deceased have been identified as one prison guard and two escaped inmates. At least six other prison inmates reportedly managed to escape during the incident, which occurred in the evening on Tuesday. It's understood a group of eight inmates escaped from the jail after killing the prison guard, leading to a military manhunt. So far, two of the escapees have been confirmed dead and the remaining six are still at large as search operations continue.

Curfew reimposed in Davao City

A curfew is set to be reimposed in Davao City, Davao del Sur, as of Thursday 15 October. The new measure will come into effect from 19:00 local time on Thursday and will remain in place every night between the hours of 19:00 - 05:00. The curfew is expected to last through to the end of the year, expiring on Thursday 31 December. According to reports, the decision to enforce the restriction comes in response to a recent spike in Covid-19 cases.

Five injured in Samar IED blasts

At least five people have been injured following two suspected bomb blasts in Samar. The blasts reportedly came from two improvised explosive devices (IEDs), which were supposedly planted in the Jiabong area by suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group. The IED's detonated on Wednesday morning along the Maharlika highway, near Barangay Tagbayaon. It's believed the IEDs were triggered by vehicles which were passing by at the time, including one police patrol car and a civilian car. Overall, one police officer and four civilians have been wounded following the incident.

Gang member killed in police shootout, Zambales

A suspected member of a kidnap-for-ransom gang has allegedly been killed in a shootout with police in Zambales The incident occurred during the early hours of Wednesday morning, at around 03:00 local time, when the police were attempting to serve an arrest warrant in Barangay Naugsol, in the Subic area. It's claimed officers came under fire when the suspect - who was wanted on suspicion of murder - resisted arrest, leading to a fatal gunfight. 

One killed in ASG attack, Sulu

A member of a local peacekeeping team has reportedly been killed in an attack by Abu Sayyaf Group (SG) militants in the Sulu province. The attack allegedly occurred on Monday in Barangay Igasan near Patikul. The victim was identified as a member of the Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team (BPAT) and was apparently killed during an ASG attack on a group of farmers. No further details have been released.

ASG hostage died in Patikul clash

A person who had been taken hostage by suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants has been killed amid a clash in Patikul, Sulu. According to reports, the clash broke out between the Filipino security forces and the ASG militants on Wednesday, during a military operation to retrieve five hostages. The deceased has been identified as one of the five Indonesian hostages being held by the group. The victims were abducted by ASG militants from a Malaysian fishing boat last January. Operations remain ongoing in the area, to rescue the remaining four hostages.

Soldier killed in friendly fire, Baguio City

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed in a case of friendly fire in Baguio City. Two others were also injured in the shooting incident, which occurred on Tuesday at the Philippines Military Academy in Fort del Pilar. An investigation into the incident has found that the shooting appears to have come about as the result of a misunderstanding which escalated into violence, leading to the suspect to open fire on two other soldiers.

Bomb blast injures two police in Albay

Two Filipino police officers have allegedly been injured following a suspected bomb blast in Albay province. The explosion occurred on Monday morning in the Manito area, where an improvised explosive device (IED) was allegedly detonated in Barangay Cawayan. It's claimed the IED has most likely been planted by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels with the intention of targeting the police, although no such claim of responsibility has been made for the attack by the NPA.

Two soldiers injured in clash with ASG rebels

Two Filipino soldiers have allegedly been injured following an armed clash with suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) rebels in the Patikul area of Sulu. According to reports, the armed forces were in the process of carrying out a military operation against a suspected ASG presence in the area when they encountered a number of armed rebels - leading to a crossfire which left at least two soldiers wounded. Casualties were also inflicted amongst ASG rebels before the fled the scene, although no precise numbers have been confirmed.

Stricter curfew measures enforced in Talisay

Stricter curfew measures have been introduced in Talisay, Negros Occidental. The latest measures come as coronavirus cases continue to be reported in the area. Curfew hours have been extended by two hours, and will now apply between the hours of 20:00 and 04:00 local time. It's hoped the stricter rules will curb the spread of the virus.

Two kidnappers killed in Rizal gunfight

Two suspected kidnappers have reportedly been killed in a recent gunfight with the security forces in the Dulong Bayan area of Rizal. The clash apparently happened on Wednesday evening, at approximately 20:00 local time, when police personnel launched a raid operation targeting the residence of suspected members of a kidnapping gang in Sitio Ibabaw 2. The suspects reportedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, leading to a fatal gunfight which left two of the suspects dead, while a third suspect was arrested.

Foreign national kidnapped in Sirawai

A foreign national has allegedly been kidnapped in Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte. According to recent reports, the victim has been identified as a Filipino-American who was apparently abducted in Barangay Tapanayan on Wednesday evening at around 18:00 local time. It's been reported that the victim was riding on a motorbike with a passenger when he was targeted by four unidentified armed attackers. The passenger managed to escape and alerted the authorities. An investigation into the abduction has been launched. The motive behind the incident remains undetermined as of yet, with no ransom demands made towards the victim's family and no claim of responsibility thus far.

NPA camp seized by army in Quezon

The Filipino security forces have reportedly seized a New People's Army (NPA) rebel camp in the Quezon area of Calabarzon. According to reports, the seizure was made as part of a military operation on Tuesday, when a raid was carried out on a suspected NPA location. A variety of firearms, ammunition, and explosives were also recovered from the site. No casualties have been reported following the operation.

Fisherman killed after boat capsizes off San Mateo Point

A Filipino fisherman has been confirmed dead and four others have been rescued after their fishing boat capsized in waters off San Mateo Point in Barangay Sinunoc, Zamboanga City. The vessel reportedly came into trouble maid adverse weather and rough sea conditions on Monday afternoon, with the Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NFWM) responding to the incident to carry out a rescue operation. 

Soldier killed in Leyte gunfight

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed in a recent gunfight in the Leyte province. The soldier was apparently shot dead during an armed altercation with suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group. The clash took place in the Sitio Bonote area of Barangay Rizal, Kananga. At least three suspected NPA rebels were also detained by security personnel following the gunfight.

Border closure extended in South Cotabato

A two-week extension of a border closure has been enforced in General Santos City of South Cotabato as coronavirus cases continue to be reported in the area. The border closure had been due to expire on 14 September, but will now remain in place until Monday 28 September. Social movement restrictions have also been extended and all public transport routes will continue to be suspended until 00:00 local time 28 September. 

Former vice mayor killed in Negros Oriental shooting

A former vice mayor of Pamplona has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Negros Oriental on Wednesday evening. Ex-vice mayor and civil security officer Kent Zerna Divinagracia, was allegedly shot dead by an unidentified gunman on a motorbike at around 20:40 local time on Wednesday. A murder investigation has been launched, although the motive behind the attack remains undetermined as of yet.

Two terror suspects killed in South Cotabato gunfight

Two suspected terrorists have been killed in a recent gunfight with the Filipino security forces in the Surallah area of South Cotabato. The suspects are thought to have been Islamic State-inspired terrorists and were apprehended by security personnel in the town on Wednesday after a tip-off was received regarding suspicious activity. A variety of bomb-making material has also been seized by the authorities. While two suspects were shot dead, another two reportedly managed to flee.

Counter-terror agreement reached with MILF

An agreement has been reached between the Filipino army and members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). The agreement aims to help resolve ongoing issues related to terrorism in the Lanao del Sur region. In accordance with the agreement, the MILF will provide continued support for the government's counter-terror and counter-extremism initiatives, and has also agreed to mediate disarmament negotiations with the Dawlah Islamiya group.

Further local lockdown measures announced for Pangasinan

Additional lockdown measures have been announced for parts of Pangasinan town as Covid-19 cases continue to be reported. Five areas are to be placed on a 14-day lockdown from Saturday 12 September, until Saturday 26 September. Areas affected include the villages of Cadre Site, Darawey, Tambac, and Bical Norte, as well as the sub-village of Barangay Ambayat 1st. Residents in these areas will be ordered to stay at home except for medical emergencies, with only health workers and other front-liners allowed to go out. A total ban on alcohol has also been brought in and yesterday, all meat and fish vendors were ordered to shut down for a week after a man who worked as a meat vendor died from Covid-19.

Nueva Ecija mayor targeted in gun attack

The Mayor of Nueva Ecija has reportedly been targeted in a gun attack. According to reports, Mayor Arvin Salonga was travelling in his car with his bodyguard when they were shot at by four unidentified assailants on Tuesday. The incident occurred in the Jaen area. While the mayor escaped unharmed, his bodyguard is reported to have sustained a non-life-threatening gunshot wound. The motive behind the attack has yet to be determined but is likely to be political.

Five ASG militants killed in gunfigth

At least five suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly been killed following a gunfight with the Filipino security forces in Zamboanga Sibugay. According to reports, the clash occurred on Wednesday morning, during the early hours at arounds 02:00 local time in Barangay President Roxa. The security forces had been conducting a search operation in the area against ASG militants when they came across the group and a crossfire broke out. While five ASG militants have been confirmed dead, two FIlipino soldiers were also wounded in the gunfight.

Local quarantine imposed in parts of Taguig City

Local quarantine measures have been imposed in parts of Taguig City in response to a rise in locally transmitted Covid-19 cases. According to local reports, local community quarantines will now be in place in the Samasipat, Barangay Santa Ana, and Pulong Kendi 2 areas until 23 September.

President Duterte pardons US marine over transgender killing

President Rodrigo Duterte has pardoned a US marine convicted of killing a transgender woman. Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton murdered Jennifer Laude in 2014 and has served just over half of his 10-year-sentence. A lawyer for Laude's family has criticised the decision, saying the president had made a "mockery" of the Philippine justice system. "This is another injustice, not only to Jennifer Laude and family but a grave injustice to the Philippine people. This is a travesty of Philippine sovereignty and democracy," said lawyer Virginia Suarez.

Five NPA rebels killed in Palawan gunfight

At least five suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group have reportedly been killed following an armed clash with the Filipino armed forces in Palawan on Thursday. A Filipino soldier was also killed in the brief gunfight, which took place in Sitio Kabuyuan in the Mainit area of Palawan. According to reports, an NPA commander is believed to be among those killed in the clash, while at least three other rebels are thought have fled the scene.

Eight killed in North Cotabato shooting

Eight people have been killed and a ninth person has been injured following a shooting incident in North Cotabato. The incident happened over the weekend in the Kabacan area, where a group of victims were fired upon by unidentified gunmen on a motorbike. The victims are understood to have been resting along the side of the highway at the time of the attack. While eight have been confirmed dead, the ninth person is said to be in critical condition. According to local police, the shooting is believed to have been motivated by a gang rivalry.

Three missing fisherman found in Itbayat

Three missing fishermen have apparently been found alive on an island in the Itbayat municipality of Batanes province. The trio had gone missing last week on Thursday 20 August, triggering search efforts. They were last seen sailing towards Mauvis Island, near Taiwan. Yesterday, they were rescued from Dinem Island (aka Diogo Island), where they were found severely dehydrated.

ASG militant detained in Mabuhay

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been arrested by the police in Mabuhay, Zamboanga Sibugay. The suspect was allegedly detained by local police officers in the Caliran area on Wednesday. Reports indicate the suspect is thought to have been involved in a 2009 kidnapping and beheading and is understood to have outstanding arrest warrants issued against him. The arrest comes after twin bomb attacks killed at least 15 in Jolo earlier this week. The ASG didn't claim responsibility but are thought to be responsible due to their presence on the island.

Suspected suicide bomber killed in Maguindanao

A suspected suicide bomber has reportedly been killed in Maguindanao. According to recent local reports, two male suspects were apprehended along the highway in Barangay Pagagawan, Datu Montawal, during the early hours of Wednesday morning at around 03:00 local time. Filipino soldiers reportedly gave chase after the suspects sped past an army checkpoint. A crossfire broke out after the suspects opened fire on security personnel. While one of the suspects was shot dead, the other managed to escape. The deceased has been identified as a member of the Bungos faction of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) - an Islamic State-affiliated militant group. An improvised explosive device (IED) was successfully defused. It's believed the suspects had planned to detonate the IED in Kabacan or Kidapawan City.

Coast guard on red alert

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has been put on red alert following yesterday's twin bombings in the southern island of Jolo, Sulu province. All PCG personnel in the Mindanao region have been put on red alert, with a particular focus on those serving in the Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, and Zamboanga provinces. The twin bombing occurred in Jolo town and killed at least 15 people. While no claim of responsibility has been made, the authorities have asserted that local Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants were likely responsible. Philippine Army (PA) commander, Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, iha reportedly called for the Sulu province to be placed under martial law following the attacks.

Twin bombings kill 15 in Jolo

Twin bombings have left at least 15 dead in the southern Philippine island of Jolo in the Sulu province. Dozens more have also been injured after explosions went off within an hour of each other in the main town on Jolo island. In one blast, an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded next to a military vehicle, killing soldiers and civilians. As police responded to the scene, a female suicide bomber tried to breach the cordon and detonate her device, killing herself and several others. In total, eight security personnel, six civilians, and the bomber were killed, while 27 security personnel and 48 civilians have been injured. No claim of responsibility has been made for the attacks; however, Jolo island is a stronghold for the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) - an Islamic State-linked militant piracy group.

Deadly shooting incident reported in Poblacion

A deadly shooting incident has been reported in Poblacion, Bohol. According to recent reports, the shooting occurred on Friday morning at around 06:20 local time, when a retired police officer was shot at several times whilst cycling through the Purok 3 Valenzuela area. The victim was confirmed dead after sustaining three gunshots wounds to the head. The police have launched a murder enquiry, with preliminary investigations suggesting the killing may have been drug-related, as the deceased had briefly worked as a bodyguard for a suspected drug criminal. 

Diplomatic warning issued to China over fishing equipment seizure

The Philippines has issued a diplomatic warning to China over the recent seizure of Filipino fishermen's fishing equipment in Scarborough Shoal in the South China Sea. According to reports, the Chinese Coast Guard is accused of illegally seizing the fishing equipment, as well as issuing illicit radio challenges to Filipino aircraft which were conducting maritime patrols and surveillance in Filipino airspace. Parts of the Scarborough Shoal remain disputed, as China claims certain area as Chinese maritime territory. China's activity in the South China Sea has come under fire from the US recently, with US President Donald Trump accusing Beijing of orchestrating a 'campaign of bullying' through military intimidation in international waters.

Local lockdowns and curfews enforced in Polomolok

Local lockdowns and night-time curfews have been enforced for 15 days in Polomolok, South Cotabato. The measures are being brought in after five new Covid-19 cases were diagnosed on Wednesday. Localised lockdowns will specifically apply to the following areas: Poblacion, Cannery, Silway 8, Magsaysay, Purok 1 and 4 of Koronadal Proper, and Purok Cassava of Maligo. Night-time curfews will apply between 19:00 and 05:00 local time elsewhere in Polomolok.

Covid-19 death toll increases by 111

The national death toll for Covid-19 in the Philippines has risen by 111 over the last 24 hours, taking the total to 2,795. Recent data also shows that an additional 4,650 new cases of infection have been diagnosed, while some 716 patients have recovered. The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases now stands at 173,774. Coronavirus cases in the Philippines have surged in recent weeks, with a record daily increase of 6,871 new cases registered on 10 August. 

Rights activist shot dead in Bacolod City

A human rights activist has been gunned down in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. The shooting reportedly occurred on Monday night in the Eroreco Subdivision of Barangay Mandalagan, where an unidentified assailant allegedly opened fire on the victim, who has been identified as Zara Alvarez - former education director for rights group Karapatan. The police have launched a murder investigation; however, no suspects have been identified thus far and the motive behind the killing remains undetermined. The attack comes barely a week after peace consultant Randall Echanis was killed in a similar attack.

Two NPA militants killed in Olas gunfight

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants have allegedly been killed during a recent gunfight in Camarines Sur. The crossfire apparently took place over the weekend in the Olas area of Lagonoy, where the Filipino security forces encountered a group of around 15 NPA militants during an operation. According to reports, the suspected militants resisted arrest and opened fire on security personnel, triggering a fatal gunfight which left at least two NPA militants dead while the rest fled the scene. No casualties have been reported amongst security personnel.

ASG militant arrested in Davao

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been arrested in Davao. The arrest was made on Thursday in the Yniguez area of Talomo, Davao city. The police had reportedly obtained an arrest warrant for the individual after receiving a tip-off about his presence in the city. The arrest operation was carried out at the residence of Nur Misuari, the chairman of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF). The suspect faces charges related to cross-border terrorism.

Earthquake hits near Basco

A 5.5-magnitude earthquake has hit near Basco in the Philippines. Data from the US Geological Survey (USGS) shows that the earthquake occurred at around 22:32 UTC on 12 August. The quake had a shallow depth at just 10km and its epicentre was located 92km south-west of Basco. No major damage or casualties have been reported following the quake.

One killed in South Cotabato shooting

A person has been killed following a shooting incident in South Cotabato province. The incident occurred in Pikit town and, according to local reports, the victim has been identified as a van driver. An unidentified lone gunman reportedly shot the victim dead at a terminal for public utility vehicles before fleeing the scene. The police suspect the incident was a targeted attack but are still investigating possible motives. No arrests have been made thus far.

Almost 100 new Covid-19 deaths reported

The Covid-19 death toll in the Philippines has risen by almost 100 in the past 24 hours. Ninety-three new virus-related deaths have been registered - taking the country's death toll to 2,404. Meanwhile, an additional 4,444 new cases of infection have also been diagnosed, bringing the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases to 143,749. Almost half of the country's cases have already recovered, leaving just over 70,000 cases active.

Coronavirus curfew imposed in Iloilo

A night time curfew has been imposed in Iloilo City, Western Visayas. The curfew applies from 20:00 to 04:00 local time and has been brought in as part of the latest set of restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of covid-19. Other measures include restricting the movement of overseas Filipino workers and locally stranded individuals. The stricter rules have come into effect as 29 new cases of covid-19 have been confirmed in the city over the last 24 hours.

Five killed in Siocon shooting incident

Five people have been killed in a recent shooting incident which occurred in the town of Siocon in Zamboanga del Norte. The shooting happened on Wednesday at a residential property during the early hours of the morning. According to reports, the five victims were shot dead by unidentified assailants shortly after midnight. Their house was then set ablaze as the suspects fled the scene. The police have launched an investigation; however, no suspects have been identified thus far and the motive behind the targeted killings remains undetermined.

Foreign national shot dead in Quezon City

A foreign national has reportedly been shot dead by an unidentified assailant in Quezon City. The shooting occurred on Thursday morning, at around 05:00 local time, on Benitez Street of Barangay San Martin de Porres, where the victim - identified as Indian trader Harpreer Singh Maan - had just made a delivery to a customer when he was shot dead. he suspect managed to flee the scene immediately after the shooting, while the victim died on the spot. Investigations to determine the shooter's identity and motive remain ongoing.

Two drug suspects shot dead

Two suspected drug criminals have been shot dead in recent gunfights with the police. The suspects were shot dead in separate incidents over the last 48 hours. One suspect was killed whilst resisting arrest in Barangay Pantubig in San Rafael, Bulacan. The other suspect was killed during a shootout with police in the San Pablo area of Laguna. Such encounters between drug suspects and the Filipino police have become commonplace, with officers often killing suspects after they allegedly resist arrest. International human rights groups have criticised President Rodrigo Duterte's so-called 'war on drugs' and have accused him of encouraging extrajudicial killings.

Three NPA militants killed in Laguna gunfight

Three suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have allegedly been killed following a gunfight with the police in Laguna. The hour-long clash occurred when police officers encountered a number of NPA militants whilst on patrol during the early hours of Thursday morning, at around 01:00 local time in the Kalayaan area, near Barangay San Antonio. No casualties have been reported amongst police personnel.

Coronavirus lockdown reintroduced

Lockdown measures have been brought back in as health experts warn of a surge in covid-19 cases in the Philippines. Tens of millions of residents have been ordered to stay at home in Manila and four surrounding provinces on the island of Luzon. The restrictions are set to last for two weeks and aim to help hospitals manage capacity. It's feared another surge in cases could push the healthcare system in the country to collapse, as hospitals have been struggling to cope with a five-fold rise in confirmed cases. The move comes after a record 5,032 new infections were recorded on Sunday, with the national total now over 100,000. The reintroduction of lockdown measures has been brought in with barely 24 hours notice, leaving many stranded in the capital without transport to return to their hometowns.

Public official shot dead in Manila

A public official has been shot dead in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila. The shooting reportedly occurred on Thursday afternoon at around 15:30 local time, near the junction of Calbayog Street and Malinao Street in the Highway Hills area. The victim has been identified as a Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office board secretary. The gunman has been described as an unidentified lone assailant who managed to escape the scene on a motorbike. The motive behind the shooting remains unclear as investigations go forward.

Health officials warn against washing face masks with petrol

The health authorities in the Philippines have warned people against washing their face masks with petrol following comments made by President Rodrigo Duterte. The president told people to disinfect their masks with petrol last week but was corrected by officials who suggested Duterte's comments had been a joke; however, the president re-emphasised his point this week, insisting he had not been joking before saying "if alcohol isn't available, especially for the poor, just go to a gasoline station, and use [gas] to disinfect". There is no evidence that gasoline can disinfect masks, and health officials have warned that prolonged contact with it can be harmful and poses a fire risk. The Philippines recently recorded a daily high of 3,954 new cases of covid-19 on Thursday, bringing the total there to 89,374, while the death toll sits at around 2,000. 

Malaysia and Philippines clash over Sabah claims

Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said he is summoning Philippine's ambassador over claims about Sabah state. Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr claimed that the Borneo state is not part of Malaysia. "This is an irresponsible statement that affects bilateral ties. @MalaysiaMFA will summon the Philippines Ambassador on Monday to explain. Sabah is, and will always be, part of Malaysia," said Hussein on Twitter. Sabah became part of Malaysia in 1963 but was previously part of the centuries-old sultanate of Sulu.

Flooding damages houses in Koronadal City

At least 16 houses have been damaged and more than 200 families displaced by flooding and landslides in Korondal City. Mayor Eliordo Ogena said a creak had overflowed after torrential rain. Crops were also destroyed and some farmers lost animals, although the extent of the damage is still being assessed.

Two shot dead in Quezon City

Two people have been shot dead in the Barangay Culiat area of Quezon City. The director of the National Center for Mental Health and another employee were targeted by unknown gunmen on Monday morning. The assailants opened fire from a motorcycle before fleeing towards Commonwealth Avenue, according to police. "The DOH denounces all violent acts committed against health care workers, especially during these difficult times," said the Department of Health in a statement.

Deadly shooting reported in Pikit, Cotabato

A person has been left dead following a fatal shooting incident in Pikit, Cotabato. The incident occurred on Thursday morning at around 10:45 local time, when two unidentified gunmen on a motorbike reportedly opened fire on the victim, who has been identified as Abdullah Mamasaunda Hussain - the headteacher of a local elementary school. Hussain had allegedly been walking home for lunch from Pikit Public Market. The police have launched a manhunt for the two gunmen, who managed to flee the scene of the crime. Hussain is understood to have received a number of threats from unidentified men recently, suggesting the shooting was a targeted crime. As of yet, the reasons behind the threats and the motive behind the killing remain unclear.

Helicopter crash leaves two dead, two missing in Cauayan City

Two people have been confirmed dead, while a third person has been injured and two others remain missing after a helicopter crashed in Cauayan City, Isabela. The accident occurred on Thursday evening shortly after 19:00 local time, when a Philippine Air Force helicopter crashed at Cauayan Airport. Accident investigations have been launched and remain underway; however, no precise cause of the fatal crash has been identified thus far.

NPA militants kill civilian in Negros Occidental

A Filipino civilian has allegedly been killed following an encounter with New People's Army (NPA) militants in Negros Occidental. According to recent reports, the incident occurred over the weekend in Barangay Buenavista, where the victim's body was discovered on Sunday afternoon. It's claimed a number of suspected NPA militants had approached several residents earlier in the day, enquiring after the victim's whereabouts. The motive behind the killing remains unclear.

Fatal shooting reported in Metro Manila

A fatal shooting incident has allegedly occurred in Port Area, Metro Manila. The shooting apparently happened neart Barangay 650 on Railroad Drive, where the victim was found dead by police. The deceased has since been identified and is understood to have had a criminal record, having served a year in prison for drug-related charges. A murder investigation has been launched, with police exploring possible drug-links. No suspects have been identified and no arrests have been made thus far.

Two-week lockdown announced in Navotas

Plans to impose a two-week lockdown have been announced for the city of Navotas. The local authorities reportedly decided on the measure following rises in coronavirus cases. The 14-day lockdown will commence this week, either by Wednesday 15 July or Thursday 16 July. Nationally, more than 57,000 covid-19 cases have been confirmed in the Philippines, including around 1,600 deaths.

Police investigating reports of ASG leader's death

Filipino police officials are understood to be investigating reports of the death of prominent Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) leader, Hajan Sawadjaan. According to reports, Sawadjaan is claimed to have been killed on Monday after being shot at during clashes with government troops in Patikul on Jolo Island in the Sulu province. It's alleged Sawadjaan was fighting among a group of around 40 ASG militants. Western Mindanao Command are now working to verify the reports. Sawadjaan is believed to have masterminded the militant attack on Jolo Cathedral which killed 23 people last year.

Roadside blast kills two in Maguindanao

Two people have died and four others have also been injured following a roadside bomb explosion in Maguindanao. The blast occurred on Thursday evening in the Shariff Aguak area, near Barangay Mother Poblacion. The deceased have been identified as a police officer and a civilian, while four other police officers were also injured in the blast. According to reports, it's believed the bomb had been planted along the roadside by Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), in an attempt to target security personnel, although no such claim of responsibility has been made for the attack thus far.

Over 43,000 prisoners released amid coronavirus measures

More than 43,000 prisoners in the Philippines have been released from jail as part of the country's response to the coronavirus pandemic. Since the outbreak began, some 43,171 prisoners have been released overall in a bid to reduce the risk of mass transmission in prisons. Many jails and detention facilities in the Philippines are overcrowded and therefore face a higher risk of localised outbreaks. To mitigate the risk, courts ordered the release of prisoners who had served their minimum sentence or had no witnesses against them. More than 51,000 cases of coronavirus have been reported in the Philippines so far, including around 1,314 deaths.

Heavy rainfall causes disruption in North Cotabato

Heavy rainfall has led to significant disruption in the town of Alamada in North Cotabato. Flash floods and landslides have reportedly blocked off a number of roads throughout the area, cutting off some villages and causing widespread connectivity issues. Operations are underway to get roads cleared as soon as possible, with roads around the city centre being cleared first. So far, no major damage or casualties have been reported amidst the disruption.

Five die after being swept away in a river

Five people have died after they were swept away in a river in the Iguig area of Cagayan. The incident occurred over the weekend, when a group of children and mothers were swimming in the river. According to reports, some of the children were swept away by the river current and drowned. While one child survived, four of them drowned, along with one of their mothers, who drowned trying to save them. 

Alert level raised for Bulusan Volcano

The alert level have been raised for Bulusan Volcano in Sorsogon following a period of increased volcanic activity. The volcano's monitoring network recorded a period of abnormal activity with several volcanic earthquakes occurring over the weekend, prompting the authorities to raise the volcano's status to Alert Level 1. Under the raised alert level, entry to the four-kilometre Permanent Danger Zone around the volcano is prohibited and pilots are advised to divert route away from the volcano's summit, due to the high-risk of smoke and ash, which negatively impact plane engines.

Protests held against anti-terror bill

Protests are being held in the Philippines in response to a new anti-terrorism bill, recently signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte. A group of around 50 protesters have reportedly gathered on MacArthur Highway between Angeles and Mabalacat in Pampanga to march to denounce the controversial new law, which has drawn criticism from human rights activists who fear it could be used to suppress free speech and harass those challenging the president, or criticising the government.

Soldier killed in militant attack in Negros Oriental

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed following a suspected militant attack in Negros Oriental. According to local reports, the attack occurred on Wednesday and was carried out by suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group in the village of Luz in Guihulngan city. It's claimed at least five NPA militants were involved in the attack, which targeted the soldier as he was travelling into the city. The soldier was apparently shot dead before the militants stole his weapon and fled the scene.

Coronavirus lockdown extended

The coronavirus lockdown in the Philippines has reportedly been extended. The extension was confirmed on Tuesday, by Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte, who stated that the lockdown measures would now remain in effect until 15 July. The decision to extend the measure was allegedly based on rising coronavirus cases reported in the country. The country has recorded over 38,500 confirmed covid-19 cases and around 12,70 deaths.

Criminal killed in Laguna shootout

A suspected criminal has reportedly been killed during a recent shootout with the police in the Laguna province. According to reports, the shootout occurred in the Siniloan area on Sunday evening, when the suspected leader of an organised crime syndicate was targeted in undercover operations led by the Filipino security forces. The suspect was apparently apprehended by undercover police officers along with several other suspected criminals. A fatal gunfight broke out when the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire, leading to the suspect's death. No other casualties have been reported and it's believed the other suspects managed to flee the scene.

Police kill four IS in Paranaque

At least four suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have reportedly been killed in police operations in the Paranaque area of the National Capital Region (NCR). According to local reports, the suspects were apprehended during a police operation in the Don Bosco district on Friday. The militants allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire, leading to an exchange of fire which left four suspects dead and one police officer injured.

Eight new coronavirus deaths reported

At least eight new coronavirus deaths have been reported in the Philippines over the last 24-hour period - taking the death toll there up to 1,177 confirmed fatalities. The total number of covid-19 cases reported has also increased by 630, bringing the overall tally to 30,682 cases of infection. An additional 250 new recoveries have also been reported. 

Journalist found guilty of cyber libel

A prominent journalist has been found guilty of libel in the Philippines. Maria Ressa, who previously worked for CNN, published a story eight years ago on Rappler that alleged businessman Wilfredo Keng had links to narcotics and human trafficking. Ressa was convicted along with another Rappler writer and both have been released on bail pending an appeal. "I think what you're seeing is death by a thousand cuts - not just of press freedom but of democracy," said Ressa, who denies any wrongdoing.

Suspected criminal killed in police clash

A suspected criminal has reportedly been killed in a recent clash with the police in Albay. The incident allegedly occurred on Monday, during the early hours of the morning at around 03:00 local time. According to reports, the suspect was believed to be a member of a criminal gang and had been apprehended by police during an arrest operation targeting the Concepcion crime syndicate in Barangay Molosbolos in the Libon area. The suspect reportedly resisted arrest and an armed altercation broke out, leaving the suspect dead and one police officer injured.

Seven activists detained amid rally in Cebu City

At least seven activists have allegedly been detained amid a rally in Cebu City. According to recent reports, the arrests were made on Friday near the University of the Philippines Cebu, where demonstrators had gathered outside the front gate to protest against the anti-terrorism bill. A local journalist was also detained by police alongside the seven activists - making eight arrests in total. All seven activists are understood to be minors and belong to local progressive organisations in Cebu. Police claim the group violated a ban on mass gatherings under community quarantine rules amid the coronavirus pandemic.

UN report criticises Duterte's drug war

A report by the UN's High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, has criticised the Filipino government of President Rodrigo Duterte for the way in which Duterte's 'war on drugs' has been carried out. The report suggested that the crackdown on drugs supported systemic abuse of power - as demonstrated by the rhetoric used by the government, essentially granting security personnel "permission to kill". Officially, more than 8,000 people have been killed in the war on drugs since Duterte took office in 2016; however, it's feared the actual figure could be three times as high, withmost killed in extrajudicial killings by security personnel. The report claimed that most victims were young poor urban males who were forced to make self-incriminating statements. A systemic lack of accountability was also noted within the police force through the use of deliberately ambiguous terminology, with victims often described as having been 'neutralised'. Duterte's administration has dismissed international criticism and condemnation of the brutal campaign.

Covid-19 death toll up by 10

The death toll for covid-19 in the Philippines has increased to 984 as of Thursday 04 June. The rise comes after a daily increase of 10 new virus-related deaths was confirmed, along with 634 new cases of infection. The latest batch of newly diagnosed cases has now taken the national total number of infections over the 20,000-mark, with the new tally standing at 20,382. Ninety-five new recoveries have also been reported over the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of covid-19 patients who have recovered to 4,248.

Covid-19 death toll up by eight

The death toll for covid-19 in the Philippines has reportedly increased by eight over the last 24 hours. The new national death toll now stands at a total of 974 confirmed coronavirus fatalities. An additional 751 new cases of infection have also been reported - taking the overall total number of diagnosed covid-19 cases to 19,748. As of Wednesday 03 June, at least 4,153 patients have recovered.

Six new covid-19 deaths reported

The covid-19 death toll in the Philippines has risen to 966 following a daily increase of six new fatalities over the past 24 hours. According to reports, an additional 359 new cases of infection have also been recorded over the last day or so - taking the national total number of confirmed coronavirus cases up to 18,997 as of Tuesday 02 June.

Lockdown eased in Metro Manila

The Filipino government has begun to ease coronavirus lockdown measures in Metro Manila. The lockdown had been in effect in the capital region since mid-March, affecting some 12 million people. More people will be allowed to leave their houses to go to work and some shops will also reopen, although many restrictions will remain in place. Overall, the country has reported a total of 18,638 cases of coronavirus and 960 deaths. The latest figures on Monday saw a daily increase of 552 new cases of infection and three new fatalities. 

Two killed in Calabarzon shooting

At least two people have been confirmed dead following a shooting incident in Calabarzon. The shooting reportedly occurred on Thursday evening, at around 22:30 local time, in the gated community of Sunnybrooke II in Barangay San Francisco of General Trias City. According to recent reports, it's believed a shootout broke out during a drinking session - leaving two people dead and another two wounded. The police responded to the scene and have since confiscated at least one firearm. The incident came about following the announcement by the provincial government of the lifting of the ban on liquor, starting Monday 01 June.

Seventeen new covid-19 deaths ireported

At least 17 new covid-19 deaths have been reported in the Philippines, taking the national death toll up to 921. The latest daily increase to the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases has also taken the total up to 15,588, after around 539 new cases of infection were diagnosed over the last 24 hours. It's estimated that almost 3,600 covid-19 patients in the Philippines have made full recoveries - leaving approximately 11,000 cases still active, of which 81 have been deemed serious or critical.

Suspected drug leader killed in police shootout

A suspected drug leader of an illegal drug trafficking group has reportedly been killed in a police shootout in Pasanginan. The deceased has been identified as Dante Alvear, who was shot dead during an armed altercation with police officers in the Longos area of Barangay Bonuan Boquig on Tuesday. According to reports, Alvear was the third most wanted drug criminal in the Metro Manila region. Various weapons, explosives, ammunition, and narcotics were confiscated from the scene.

Covid-19 total increases by over 200

The total number of confirmed covid-19 cases in the Philippines has risen by more than 200 over the last 24 hours, with 224 newly diagnosed cases of infection taking the national total to 12,942. Meanwhile, an additional six fatal virus cases have also been registered, bringing the death toll for the Philippines up to 837. 

Seven new covid-19 deaths reported

At least seven new covid-19 deaths have been reported in the Philippines - taking the national death toll to 831 as of Monday. The total number of confirmed cases of coronavirus has also risen to 12,718 overall, following a daily increase of 205 newly diagnosed cases of infection. It's estimated that around 2,729 covid-19 patients have recovered.

Fifteen NPA rebels killed in Northern Mindanao clash

The Filipino security forces have reportedly killed at least 15 New People's Army (NPA) rebels during a recent clash in Misamis Oriental province in Northern Mindanao. The clash occurred during security operations in Gingoog City, which were carried out over a period of 48 hours earlier this week. According to reports, various arms and ammunition were also confiscated from the rebels following the clash, including rifles and explosives.

Eighteen new covid-19 deaths confirmed

At least 18 new covid-19 deaths have been registered in the Philippines, along with at least 258 new cases of infection. The latest figures were recorded over the past 24 hours and take the national death toll up to 790, and the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the country up to 11,876. As of Thursday, around 2,337 covid-19 patients have recovered.

Five NPA rebels killed in Sorsogon

The Filipino security forces have reportedly killed at least five suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels during an operation in Sorsogon province. Local reports indicate the incident took place over the weekend near Barangay Dolos in the Bulan area of Sorsogon, where the security forces apparently encountered a number of NPA rebels and engaged in an armed clash which left five dead. No casualties have been reported amongst security personnel.

Coronavirus death toll rises to 685

The national death toll for the covid-19 outbreak in the Philippines has risen to 685 confirmed fatalities. The rise comes after 27 new virus-related deaths were registered over the past 24 hours. An additional 339 cases of infection have also been diagnosed - taking the total number of confirmed coronavirus case up to 10,343. As of Thursday afternoon, at least 1,618 coronavirus patients have recovered from the virus.

Fourteen new coronavirus deaths recorded

At least 14 new coronavirus deaths have been registered in the Philippines over the last 24 hours, taking the total number of covid-19 fatalities to 637. Almost 200 new cases of infection have also been diagnosed, raising the national tally to 9,684 confirmed cases of coronavirus. According to reports, an additional 93 recoveries have also been recorded - bringing the total number of recovered patients to 1,408.

Local administration official killed in Cotabato ambush attack

A local administration official has reportedly been killed in a recent ambush attack in the Matalam area of Cotabato. The attack occurred on Thursday evening at around 18:30 local time near Purok Tagumpay-2, where the victim and several others were ambushed by a group of rivals. At least six others were also injured in the incident. It's suspected the attack may have been motivated by a long-running feud with a local rival clan over a land conflict.

Two NPA fighters killed in Soccsksargen

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) fighters have allegedly been killed and two others have also been arrested following an encounter between suspected NPA fighters and the Filipino security forces in Soccsksargen. The altercation occurred on Wednesday morning at around 05:00 local time in Lake Sebu town near Barangay Lamfugon, where the police apprehended the suspects, but some resisted arrest - leading to a fatal shootout. A range of firearms, weapons, and ammunition were confiscated from the site of the clash.

Tondo district in Manila put under strict 48-hour lockdown

The Tondo district in Manila has been placed under a strict lockdown for 48 hours. The 'hard lockdown' will be in effect over the course of the coming weekend, between Friday 01 May and Sunday 03 May. The lockdown was announced by Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno on Wednesday as part of the city's planned response to containing and preventing the further spread of the coronavirus amid the global pandemic.

Twenty-eight new covid-19 deaths reported

At least 28 new covid-19 deaths have been reported in the Philippines - taking the virus death toll there up to 558 confirmed fatalities. Meanwhile, an additional 254 new cases of infection have also been diagnosed in the last 24 hours. Overall, the nationwide total number of confirmed coronavirus cases now stands at 8,212.

Coronavirus lockdown extended

The coronavirus lockdown in the Philippines' capital of Manila has been extended until 15 May. The extension also applies to other high risk areas. At least 6,981 cases of infection have been reported in the Philippines, including 462 fatalities. Globally, more than 2.7 million have caught the virus and over 191,000 have died.

Suspected NPA leader killed in Samar clash

A suspected leader of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group has allegedly been killed during an altercation with the Filipino security forces in the Calbiga area of Samar. The clash reportedly occurred over the weekend near Barangay Buluan, where the security forces engaged in a crossfire with suspected militants, leaving one dead.

Nine new coronavirus deaths reported

At least nine new coronavirus deaths have been reported in the last 24 hours - taking the national death toll up to 446. An additional 111 newly diagnosed covid-19 patients have also been recorded, bringing the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases to 6,710. At least 693 people have recovered.

Nine new coronavirus deaths reported

At least nine new coronavirus deaths have been reported in the Philippines over the last 24 hours - taking the national death toll up to 437. Another 140 newly diagnosed cases of infection have also been reported, bringing the overall number of infection to 6,599. So far, at least 654 patients have recovered from the virus.

Eleven soldiers killed in clash with ASG militants in Sulu

At least 11 Filipino soldiers have been killed and 14 others have also been injured following an armed clash with suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. The fighting occurred in an undisclosed part of the province, but is likely to have occurred near Patikul on Jolo island, where the militant group largely bases its operations from.

President threatens martial law over lockdown violations

President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to enforce martial law over lockdown violations amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Under martial law, the government can deploy military and police onto the streets of the capital city, Manila. Duterte has resorted to considering the measure following widespread violation of the lockdown, as the number of cars on the roads increased. Some 120,000 people have already been apprehended by police for flouting lockdown rules. The Philippines has recorded 5,660 confirmed coronavirus cases so far, including 362 deaths.

Suspected drug criminal killed in security operation, Metro Manila

A suspected drug criminal has reportedly been killed in a recent security operation in the Malabon area of Metro Manila. The police allegedly conducted a raid targeting suspected drug dealers on Alupihan Street in Barangay Longos at around 18:45 local time on Thursday afternoon. During the raid, the suspects resisted arrest, leading to a shootout which left one suspect dead and a second injured, along with a police officer. At least 20g of methamphetamine and various firearms were confiscated from the suspects.

Twenty-one new coronavirus deaths reported

At least 21 new coronavirus deaths have been reported in the Philippines over the last 24 hours, along with 206 new cases of infection. As of Thursday morning, the country's death toll sits around the 200-mark, while the total number of cases is around 4,000.

Five new covid-19 deaths reported

At least five new fatal cases of covid-19 have been reported in the Philippines over the last 24 hours, raising the death toll there to at least 182 confirmed fatalities. Another 106 new cases of infection have also been diagnosed, taking the national total to around 3,870 confirmed cases. Meanwhile, at least 12 more coronavirus patients have now recovered, bringing the total number of recoveries to 96.

Police officer killed in Leyte shooting

A Filipino police officer has reportedly been killed following a shooting incident in Leyte, Eastern Visayas. According to local reports, the shooting occurred late on Sunday evening during a failed attempt by police officers to arrest a wanted man. The suspect reportedly opened fire on police personnel upon being apprehended and managed to flee the scene. Search operations have been launched in pursuit of the suspect and remain ongoing.

Eleven new coronavirus deaths reported

At least 11 new coronavirus deaths have been reported, along with 414 new cases of infection over the last 24 hours. The latest increase in figures takes the national total to around 3,660 confirmed cases, while the death toll now stands at 163. Over the course of the weekend, 16 new deaths were reported overall - marking a steep downturn from Friday's daily increase of 29.

Coronavirus death toll rises to 78

The death toll for the coronavirus has risen to 78 in the Philippines after seven new fatalities were confirmed on Monday. The latest cases were confirmed by the Filipino government's health department, which also stated that an additional 128 new cases of infection have also been recorded - taking the national total number of cases to around 1,546. So far only 42 people have recovered from the virus in the Philippines and no new recoveries have been reported in the last 24 hours.

Foreign nationals stranded amid coronavirus travel restrictions

Foreign nationals remain stranded in parts of the Philippines due to travel restrictions brought in amid the global coronavirus pandemic. Domestic flight suspensions have left foreign tourists and visitors stuck on Filipino islands in some cases, struggling to get to an international transport hub. Those who have managed to reach main airports have found no direct flights home, with high demand for other transit routes with stopovers in countries like Oman. What seats remain on flights are also often very expensive, prompting calls on foreign government to charter repatriation flights.

Travel ban for foreign nationals

The Philippines has enforced a travel ban for foreign nationals, which blocks their entry to the country amid the coronavirus outbreak. Exemptions to the ban largely include diplomatic personnel and their families. Domestic flights to and from Manila have been suspended, while school classes have been cancelled. The police and military have also been brought in to man quarantine checkpoints and enforce evening curfews. There are currently 217 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the Philippines, although the real number is suspected to be much higher. At least 17 deaths have also been recorded.

All travel to Davao region suspended due to coronavirus

All travel to the Davao region has been suspended due to coronavirus concerns. The restriction applies to all land, sea, and domestic air travel to the region and will remain in place for 14 days. The travel suspension comes after the first confirmed coronavirus case were reported in the region over the weekend. Overall, the Philippines has recorded at least 187 cases and 12 deaths. A state of calamity has been declared throughout the country in response to the outbreak.

Four killed in Central Visayas van-bus collision

Four fatalities have been reported following a collision between a van and a bus in Central Visayas. The accident occurred along the national highway near Barangay Estaca in Compostela during the early hours of Friday morning, at around 03:00 local time. According to reports, the crash is the 13th latest such road accident to recently occur in the Compostela area. Three other people were also injured in the accident.

Capital city to be locked down over coronavirus

The Filipino capital city of Manila is due to be put on lock down due to the spread of the coronavirus. President Rodrigo Duterte announced the measure on Thursday, stating that the move came as part of a bid to combat the outbreak, which has killed at least two people in the Philippines and infected some 53 others. Cancellations of domestic land, sea, and air travel to and from the capital have also been announced, along with community quarantine measures. Mass gatherings have also been banned and schools have been closed for a month.

Fourteen IS-linked militants killed in Maguindanao clashes

At least 14 Islamic State (IS) loyalists have allegedly been killed amid recent clashes in Maguindanao. Fighting between the security forces and militants from the IS-affiliated Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) first broke out last week and has been going on for several days. Clashes have been reported in the Ampatuan and Datu Hoffer Ampatuan areas, while the security forces have cleared areas in Barangay Salman and confiscated various explosives and weapons. Overall, 14 BIFF militants and four security personnel have died. Militants claim to have killed 43 soldiers in an explosive attack; however, this has been denied by the Filipino security forces.

Public health emergency declared over coronavirus

A public health emergency has reportedly been declared in the Philippines over the coronavirus outbreak. Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte announced the state of public health emergency on Monday, after the number of coronavirus infections almost doubled in the country. As of Tuesday 10 March, some 33 cases have been reported and one death has been confirmed. The declaration will enable the authorities to call on law enforcement agencies to help combat the spread of the virus.

Twenty-seven held hostage by security guard in San Juan

At least 27 people are being held hostage by a security guard at a mall in San Juan. The standoff has been unfolding since Monday morning as police enter their sixth hour of negotiations with the hostage-taker - believed to be disgruntled former security guard, Archie Paray, who had been absent without leave before he took people hostage and injured another security guard at V-Mall in Greenhills Shopping Centre shortly before noon on Monday. The hostages are reportedly being held in the mall's admin office and the suspect is said to be communicating with police through a radio stolen from the injured security guard. The incident is thought to be motivated by the suspect's recent sacking and he is apparently demanding to speak with his fellow security guards and the media.

Fatal shooting reported in Metro Manila

A fatal shooting incident has been reported in Metro Manila. According to local reports, one person was killed and a second person was injured in a suspected shooting incident which occurred in a restaurant in the Makati area on Wednesday. Two suspects have already been identified and arrested by the police and investigations get underway. The deceased has been identified as a Chinese national, whose wife was also injured in the attack. Both suspects are also understood to be Chinese. It's possible the killing was motivated by a settling of accounts.

Travel to South Korea banned over coronavirus

A travel ban to South Korea has been enforced over coronavirus fears. South Korea has been battling a spike in coronavirus cases with, 1,146 confirmed cases reported - the most outside of China, where the outbreak began. The Filipino authorities stated on Wednesday that Filipino nationals would not be allowed to travel to any part of South Korea "for their own safety", with no exceptions to the ban. Additionally, those returning from South Korea's North Gyeongsang Province or Gyeongbuk, including Daegu and Cheongdo County, would not be allowed back into the country. An assessment on Friday will consider if an expansion of the ban is necessary.

Chinese kidnap victim rescued in Metro Manila

A male Chinese national who was being held hostage by suspected kidnappers has been safely rescued following a police operation in Metro Manila. The operation was carried out over the weekend after the victim was allegedly abducted by at least three Chinese suspects in a casino in a hotel in the Paranaque area. According to reports, the security forces made three arrests in connection with the abduction. It's believed the incident was motivated by a settlement of accounts after the suspects lent the victim money and he tried to pay it back but was short. It's claimed the victim's friend sent the outstanding amount to the suspects' account, but they refused to release the victim, instead demanding a ransom of one million pesos for his release, prompting the victim's friend to report the incident to the authorities.

Deadly shooting incident reported in Samar

A fatal shooting incident has left at least one person dead and a second person injured in the province of Samar. The incident occurred on Thursday evening at around 20:50 local time in Calbayog city, where the victim was apparently shot dead in Barangay Tarabucan in the Oquendo district. The deceases has been identified as the wife of a Filipino soldier, who was inside their 'sari-sari' store when a lone gunman opened fire on her. While the woman died from several gunshot wounds, her husband was injured after sustaining a gunshot wound to the arm. The suspect allegedly managed to flee the scene and the motive behind the killing has yet to be identified.

Town councillor shot dead in Bayawan

A Filipino town councillor has been shot dead in the city of Bayawan in the Negros Oriental province. According to local reports, 62-year-old Alex Tizon was driving along the highway in Barangay Villareal when two gunmen on a motorbike overtook him and opened fire. Tizon reportedly died at the scene while the suspects managed to escape. An investigaiton into the killing has been launched - it's suspected the attack could have been motivated by politics or revenge.

Three fishermen killed in Masbate boat attack

Three Filpino fishermen have been killed in a recent boat attack in the Masbate province. The incident occurred on Tuesday night in seawaters off Balud town, where unidentified assilants reportedly threw a stick of dynamite into the victims' boat. According to reports, the explosion killed three of the five fishermen immediately, while the other two managed to escape the attack unharmed. The police are investigating the attack - the motive behind which still remains unclear. No arrests have been made thus far.

Drug criminal killed in Camarines Sur

A suspected drug criminal has apparently been killed in a recent police operation in Camarines Sur. According to reports, the suspect was apprehended in the Barangay Topas Proper in the town of Nabua on Monday evening. After resisting arrest, an exchange of fire broke out and the suspect was shot dead. Some 20 sachets of methamphetamine hydrochloride was found on their person. 

Local NPA leader killed in North Cotabato shootout

A local leader of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group has reportedly been killed in a shootout in North Cotabato. The shootout allegedly occurred in the Makilala area over the weekend, in the village of Malabuan, where the Filipino security forces apparently launched an operation to serve the suspect, Juanita Tacadao, with an arrest warrant for murder and robbery. Accordinfg to reports, Tacadao resisted arrest and instead opened fire, resulting in her death, while her accomplises managed to escape. Tacadao is believed to have been the regional head of logistics and finance for the NPA's Far South Mindanao Guerilla Front.

Isabela shootout leaves three NPA militants dead

A shootout between the Filipino security forces and suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group has reportedly left three NPA militants dead in the Isabela province. The crossfire occurred in the Ilagam municipality near the village of Rang-ayan, where the security forces were carrying out an operation when they encountered the suspected militnats. Various firearms and ammunition was seized from the site of the clash.

Four Malaysian nationals rescued from Chinese kidnap ring

Four Malaysian nationals have been rescued from a kidnap ring operated by Chinese nationals. The four victims were safely rescued by the Filipino security forces in the San Pedro area of the Laguna province during an operation over the weekend. According to reports, at least seven Chinese nationals were also arrested during the operation, which targeted a propertu in Barangay Chrysantheum, where the hostages were being held against their will. The suspects had allegedly taken the victims' passports and beat them, forcing them to work. In several cases, victims' relatives had also been contacted and asked for a ransom in exchange for their release.

Police officer killed in Manila shooting

A Filipino police officer has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in the capital city of Manila. Reports indicate that the shooting occurred on Thursday evening inside a restaurant on Arellano Avenue in the Malate area. It appears the shooting was a targeted attack, although police are yet to work out the motive behind the incident. No arrests have been made and no suspects have been identified thus far.

NPA militants kill police officer in Western Visayas

A Filipino police officer has allegedly been killed in a recent ambush attack by suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in Western Visayas. According to reports, the police officer was targeted on Wednesday in Barangay Aglobong, in the Janiuay area of Iloilo, where he was attacked and died at the scene. The suspects managed to flee the scene immediately after the killing and no arrests have been made thus far as police investigations and search oeprations get underway. It's suspected the attack was motivated by the victim's work as a polcie officer.

Suspected militant killed by security forces in North Cotabato

A suspected militant has apparently been killed and two others have also been wounded during a security operation in North Cotabato. The Filipino security forces reportedly encountered the suspected militants near Barangay Manaulanan in Pikit on Wednesday during an operation. An exchange of fire broke out between the suspects and the seccurity forces, resulting in the death of one suspect while two others were injured. It's believed the suspects were members of the Dawlah Islamiya militant group. Various weapons, ammunition, and explosives were also recovered from the scene.

Suspected drug criminal killed in Southern Leyte shooting

A suspected drug criminal has apparently been killed in a shooting incident in Southern Leyte. The incident occurred on Tuesday in the Maasin area, where a prominent local narcotics trafficker, 31-year-old Joseph Salvador Siega, was targeted by unidentified assailants in a drive-by shooting in Barangay Tagnipa. According to reports, Siega had been in a restaurant and had stepped outside to smoke a cigarette when he was attacked. He died at the scene, while the suspects managed to flee. A police investigation has been launched.

Week-long anti-narcotics operation kills 11 in Bulacan

At least 11 suspected drug criminals have been killed following a week-long anti-narcotics operation in Bulacan. An additional 111 suspects were also arrested during the operation, which was led by the Filipino security forces as part of President Rodrigo Duterte's controversial 'war on drugs'. The operation targeted suspected and known drug pushers in the Norzagaray, San Ildefonso, San Jose Del Monte, Santa Maria, San Rafael, and Plaridel areas.

Maguindanao town mayor shot dead in Manila

The mayor of Talitay town in Maguindanao, Abdul Wahab Sabal, has reportedly been shot dead in a gun attack in Manila. The incident occurred on Monday night in front of the Mannra Hotel on Quirino Avenue in the Malate district of Manila. According to reports, it's believed Sabal got out of his vehicle in front of the hotel, where he was about to check in, when unidentified gunmen on a motorbike reportedly shot him several times before fleeing the scene. An investigation into his death has been launched and remains ongoing. 

Police officer shot dead in Laguna

A police officer has apparently been shot dead in a recent shooting incident in the Laguna province. The shooting is reported to have happened on Wednesday in Barangay Santo Tomas of Binan City, where a lone gunman opened fire and shot the victim several times as he got out of his vehicle. The victim has been identified as Sgt Ronaldo Barrameda, a former intelligence officer. It's possible the shooting was related to his former work as an intelligence officer, as he had apparently received a numer of death threats recently. The gunman reportedly managed to flee the scene immediately after the shooting. Investigations remain ongoing.

Police officer killed in Leyte shooting

A Filipino police officer has been killed in a recent shooting incodent in the Leyte province. According to recent reports, the shooting occurred in Barangay Lunang in the Hilongos area on Friday morning at around 07:30 local time. No suspects have been arrested thus far as investigations into the death continue. 

Earthquake hits near Davao Occidental

A 6.0-magnitude earthquake has reportedly hit near the Davao Occidental province. According to the USGS, the quake apparently occurred at around 13:40 UTC on Thursday, at a relatively shallow depth of 43.6 kilometres - meaning tremors were felt throughout nearby areas. The epicentre of the earthquake was located out in the Philippine Sea, approximately 104km south-south-east of Pondaguitan. No major damage or casualties have been reported as a result of the earthquake and no tsunami warning has been issued.

Suspected drug criminal killed in Cavite shootout

A suspected drug criminal has apparently been killed in a recent shootout with police in Cavite. The incident occurred on Wednesday in Barangay Manggahan in the General Trias area, where Filipino police officers attempted to apprehend a suspected narcotics trafficker during a buy bust operation; however, the suspect allegedly resisted arrest and instead opened fire on police personnel, triggering a fatal exchange of fire.

African swine fever triggers state of calamity in Davao Occidental

A state of calamity has been declared in Davao Occidental over an ongoing outbreak of African swine fever. The declaration was announced by the local authorities on Tuesday and will free funds and resources to be funneled into tackling the outbreak. The outbreak originated from Don Marcelino town, where, 7,000 pigs are due to be culled after 5,000 were killed by the outbreak. The problem has also spread to the nearby town of Malita, where a temporary ban on the entry and exit of pigs and pork-related products has been enforced. The declaration applies to both towns.

Two killed in Negros Oriental stabbing

At least two people have been killed and five others have been injured following a recent stabbing incident which in Negros Oriental over the weekend. The stabbing reportedly occurred in Barangay Pacuan in the La Libertad area, early on Sunday morning. According to reports, the police have launched a murder investigation and recently detained a suspect, although the motive behind the shooting still remains unclear.

First coronavirus death reported in the Philippines

Officials in the Philippines have confirmed the first fatality from the novel coronavirus outbreak outside of China. The victim was a 44-year-old Chinese national who had travelled from the city of Wuhan, where the virus was first detected. More than 300 people have been killed inside China, and more than 14,000 infected. "This is the first reported death outside China. However, we need to take into mind that this is not a locally acquired case. This patient came from the epicentre of this outbreak," said the World Health Organization representative to the Philippines.

Suspected criminal shot dead in Rizal

A suspected drug criminal has reportedly been shot dead in Rizal by an unidentified assailant. The shooting allegedly occurred on in Barangay San Lorenzo Ruiz in the Taytay area. According to local reports, the deceased has been identified as suspected drug criminal Maria Leonara Lorilla, who was shot at close range by an unidentified armed woman. The suspect was allegedly accompanied by a second person and both of them fled the scene on foot. 

Asymptomatic coronavirus case confirmed

The Philippines has confirmed it's first case of the novel Wuhan coronavirus (2019-nVoC). According to Al Jazeera, a 38-year-old Chinese woman who arrived in the country from the Chinese city of Wuhan on Tuesday 21 January tested positive for the virus, despite being asymptomatic. The woman has been confined in a government hospital isolation ward where she is receiving treatment.

Three killed in Metro Manila shooting

At least three people have been killed and two others have also been wounded in a shooting incident in Metro Manila. The incident occurred in the Taguig area on Tuesday afternoon at around 14:30 local time. It's alleged that the five victims were attacked by four unidentified gunmen outside the Department of Science and Technology on General Santos Avenue in Barangay Upper Bicutan. Two of the three fatalities have been identified as Chinese nationals, while both casualties are said to be children aged five and 12-year-old. The police have launched an investigation into the shooting - the motive behind which remains unclear.

Soldier killed in Cotabato ambush

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed and a second soldier has also been injured in an armed ambush in the Midsayap area of Cotabato. According to reports, the two soldiers had been riding in tandem on a motorbike when two unidentified gunmen riding on a separate motorbike opened fire on them whilst travelling along the national highway of Barangay Central Glad, about five kilometres outside of the town centre. Both soldiers were in civilian clothes and suffered gunshot wounds causing them to fall to the roadside while the suspects fled the scene. Both victims were rushed to hospital, where one succumbed to his wounds just hours later. Four empty shells for a cal. 45 pistol were found at the scene and the police have launched a manhunt. The motive behind the attack currently remains undetermined.

Possible case of coronavirus reported

A possible case of the new coronavirus which has spread in China has been reported in the Philippines. The Filipino authorities have launched a probe into what could be the country's first case of the Sars-like virus, which has infected over 200 people in mainland China so far, killing at least four people. The patient is thought to be a five-year-old child who arrived in the central Filipino city of Cebu on 12 January from the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the disease was discovered. The child was hospitalised with flu symptoms and has tested positive for a virus, although it's unclear if it is the same strain as the outbreak in China. The disease has also spread to three other Asian countries, including Japan, South Korea, and Thailand. On Tuesday, it was confirmed that the Chinese authorities had found clear evidence of human-to-human transmission.

ASG militant killed in Jolo shootout

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has allegedly been shot dead in a recent shootout with the Filipino security forces in the Jolo area of the Sulu province, where the ASG largely base themselves. According to reports, the encounter was instigated by military helicopters targeting a suspected ASG position on Solre Island. The deceased is thought to have been involved in the recent kidnapping of five Indonesian fishermen near Lahad Datu, Malaysia.

Visits to Taal volcano affected areas banned

Filipino officials have temporarily banned visits to areas affected by the Taal volcano. The order comes as part of a crackdown on evacuation orders for the area to put off local residents from returning to their homes too soon. According to reports, some residents have been allowed to make daily visits to their houses; however, officials have reiterated that the volcano remains a threat as it could still erupt at any time. More than 110,000 people have taken refuge in evacuation centres since Taal erupted a week ago.

Taal Volcano threat still active

The Filipino authorities have issued a warning advising people that the threat from the Taal Volcano eruption still remains active. Despite weaker emissions and fewer tremors, the volcano remains life-threatening and thousands of displaced villagers have been advised not to risk returning to homes int he danger zone. According to the local authorities, an alert level 4 still remains in effect over Taal Volcano as of Friday morning, meaning hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days. 

Four new polio cases reported

Four new cases of polio have recently been reported. The Filipino Department of Health confirmed the cases on Thursday, stating that the latest cases raise the national total to 16 since the outbreak was declared last September. Two of the four cases were reported from the Maguindanao province, while another case was reported in the Sultan Kudurat province, and a fourth was reported in Quezon, Metro Manila. Polio is an infectious disease with primary symptoms including muscle fatigue, general weakness, and in some cases, temporary or permanent paralysis.

Suspected ASG militant detained in Zamboanga del Sur

A suspected militant from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has apparently been arrested by the Filipino authorities in Zamboanga del Sur. According to local reports, the suspect was detained by security personnel during the early hours of Friday morning at the Zamboanga Port Authority Compound in Zamboanga City. The suspect did not resist arrest and currently remains in police custody.

Four drug criminals killed in police shootouts

Four suspected drug criminals have allegedly been killed in separate police shootouts. According to reports, three suspected narcotics dealers were shot dead by Filipino police officers and one was arrested during the early hours of Thursday morning in Barangay Gaya-Gaya, in the San Jose del Monte area of Bulacan. In a separate incident, a fourth suspected narcotics dealer was also killed in another shootout with police in Barangay San Miguel, in the Botolan area of Zambales. Overall, three firearms and a significant amount of methamphetamine was also confiscated from the suspects.

Evacuation orders issued in Batangas over volcanic eruption

Evacuation orders have apparently been issued in parts of the Batangas province over the ongoing eruption of Taal volcano. The list of areas to be evacuated was compiled by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology and includes areas in Agoncillo, Alitagtag, Balete, Cuenca, Laurel, Lemery, Lipa City, Malvar, Mataas na Kahoy, San Nicolas, Santa Teresita, Taal, Talisay, and Tanauan City. According to reports, the evacuation order covers a 14km radius around the volcano, which has been identified as a high-risk zone, susceptible to ballistic projectiles, base surge, and volcanic tsunami.

Twelve IS militants surrender in Maguindanao

Twelve Islamic State (IS) militants have allegedly surrendered in Maguindanao. The suspects apparently handed themselves in to the Filipino army in Sultan sa Barongis on Tuesday. The surrender came amid hunger concerns, exasperated by ongoing military operations on the region. It's believed the operations kept the militants on the run, until they ran low on supplies and faced the threat of starvation, prompting them to hand themselves over. Various weapons were also handed in.

Taal volcano erupts south of Manila

A state of calamity has been declared in the Batangas province where the Taal volcano has erupted. The volcano is located about 70km south of the capital Manila and began spewing lava during the early hours of Monday morning. A mass evacuation was ordered when the volcano began emitting a huge plume of ash just hours before. The volcano is the country's second most active one and is also one of the world's smallest volcanoes, situated on an island in the middle of a lake. Authorities have warned that a "hazardous eruption" is possible "within hours or days". The alert level has been raised from three to four, out of a maximum of five. A 14km danger zone around the volcano has been identified, with an estimated 450,000 people thought to be residing within that area. The authorities have warned of a possible "volcanic tsunami", which could be triggered by eruption debris generating large waves in the lake surrounding the volcano. Volcanic ash also forced Manila's international airport to suspend all flights on Sunday, with partial operations resumed on Monday. The Filipino stock exchange also halted all trading on Monday, while President Duterte has ordered the suspension of government work in Manila and the closure of all schools in the capital.

Ex police officer killed in Pangasinan shooting

A former police officer has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Pangasinan. The shooting reportedly occurred in Barangay Nalsiyaan in the Calasiao area of the province. No other casualties have been reported and the police are investigating possible motives behind the attack, which appears to have been a targeted killing. No suspects have yet been identified.

Deadly clan war reported in Basilan

A violent and deadly clan war has been reported in the town of Tabuan Lasa in Basilan, leaving at least two people dead. The clash allegedly occurred on Wednesday, when a member of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and his brother were both killed in a gunfight with a rival clan in Barangay Babag. Other local residents reportedly escaped to safer ground to avoid being collaterally caught in the crossfire.

Suspected drug dealer killed in South Cotabato police shootout

A suspected drug dealer has apparently been killed in a police shootout in South Cotabato. Local reports indicate the shootout happened in Barangay Palkan in the Polomolok area, where police officers were apparently carrying out a sting operation against a suspected narcotics criminal. However, the suspect allegedly resisted arrest during the buy-bust and instead opened fire on the officers, leading to a fatal exchange of fire. No other casualties were reported following the incident.

Former vice governor shot dead in Sultan Kudarat

Former vice governor Rolly Recinto has been killed in a shooting incident in Sultan Kudarat. The shooting occurred on Tuesday afternoon on Barangay Belumin in the Lambayong area. It's believed Recinto was ambushed in a targeted attack, as he was waylaid along the highway as he drove into town. Police confirmed that Recinto died as a result of multiple gunshot wounds and was declared dead at the scene. An investigation into the killing has been launched and a manhunt for the suspects is underway.

Businesses engulfed by deadly fire in General Santos city

A number of businesses have been engulfed by a deadly fire which has broken out on Wednesday morning in General Santos City in South Cotabato. The blaze has reportedly killed at least one person and left an additional two others injured. Preliminary reports indicate as many as five local businesses have caught fire. It's still unclear what caused the fire to break out as the emergency services attend to the scene. Workplace safety standards are often lax, resulting in often fatal workplace disasters.

President orders Filipino citizens to leave Iraq

President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered Filipino citizens to leave Iraq following recent events which have led to heightened tensions in the region. The president's announcement comes just hours after two air bases housing US forces in Iraq were hit in an Iranian ballistic missile attack, which was carried out in response to the killing of a top Iranian general in a US airstrike at Baghdad airport last week. It's still unclear if there were any casualties as a result of last night's missile strikes; however, it's believed the retaliatory strikes targeted empty buildings. The Filipino authorities claim there may be as many as 1,190 documented and 450 undocumented Filipino citizens currently in Iraq.

Three killed in Calabarzon shooting

At least three people have been confirmed dead following a shooting incident in the Calabarzon region. The incident occurred within the last 48 hours in the Batangas area of Calabarzon. Two people were reportedly killed by a gunman, who was also shot dead, during an incident in Barangay Antipolo, Rosario. The police have launched an investigation into the shooting, with the motive still undetermined thus far. Meanwhile, in the Ilocos region, another person was also shot dead in a separate incident outside Bacnotan National High School in Bacnotan, La Union.

Two BIFF militants detained by security forces in Manila

Two suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group have allegedly been arrested by the Filipino security forces in Manila. According to reports, the arrests took place over the weekend. The security forces had apparently engaged in a crossfire with the suspects, which culminated in their arrests with no casualties reported. A number of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were also seized from the suspects' vehicle.

Dozens injured in Cotabato bus crash

Dozens of people have been injured after a passenger bus crashed into a ditch at the side of the road in Kidapawan, Cotabato. Reports indicate the crash occurred on Friday morning, during the early hours, near Barangay Amas, where it's suspected the driver of the bus lost control of the vehicle, allowing it to veer off the road and into the ditch. At least 26 casualties have been reported, none of whom are believed to be in critical condition. The cause of the accident remains under investigation.

Fatal road accident reported in Quezon

A fatal road accident has reportedly killed at least four people and injured three others in Candelaria, Quezon. According to local reports, the accident occurred on Wednesday evening at around 18:00 local time along the Maharlika highway near Barangay Bukal Sur. Reports from the scene of the accident indicate a tricycle collided with a passenger bus. The precise cause of the crash remains undetermined as investigations go froward.

Typhoon Phanfone death toll rises

The death toll from Typhoon Phanfone has reportedly risen to at least 28 confirmed fatalities, with authorities warning the figure could continue to rise further still as search and rescue operations remain ongoing for 12 missing people. The storm made landfall on Christmas Eve, causing severe floods across several provinces, leaving dozens of homes destroyed and some 58,000 people affected. Most of those killed were either drowned, electrocuted, or crushed by falling trees.

Deadly typhoon hits the Philippines

A deadly typhoon has hit the Philippines, leaving at least 28 people dead; however, unconfirmed reports suggest the death toll could rise further still. The storm made landfall on Tuesday night hitting a number of islands in central Philippines, bringing gusts of 190kmh (118mph), destroying homes and power lines and causing widespread disruption. 

Kidnap victim rescued in Pasay, Metro Manila

A kidnap victim who had been taken hostage by two Chinese nationals has reportedly been rescued by police in Pasay, Metro Manila. The victim has been identified as a Taiwanese national and was allegedly abducted by the two suspects earlier this week. Reports claim that 28-year-old Chin-Wei Liu has borrowed money from the two suspects but lost all of it at the casino of Resorts World Manila. The two men allegedly kept Chin-Wei in a hotel room at Maxims Hotel and forced the victim to make a call to a friend, asking to borrow over 200,000 pesos in order to pay the men back. His friend instead contacted the Taiwanese embassy, which led to the police launching an operation to retrieve the victim.

Four killed in shooting incidents

At least four people have been killed and a fifth person has been injured in separate shooting incidents. According to reports, one person was killed in Barangay Calibuyo in the Tanza area of Cavite province. Elsewhere, another two people were also killed in Barangay Lucsuhin in Calatagan, Batangas, while one person was killed and another was injured in Barangay Santa Anastacia in Santo Tomasin of the same province. The police are investigating possible links between the incidents.

Two killed in Libmanan train accident

Two fatalities have been reported following a train accident in Libmanan, Camarines Sur. According to local reports, the accident occurred shortly before midday on Thursday in the village of Camambugan, where it's believed a commuter train hit a passenger can at a level crossing. Unconfirmed reports suggest the deceased have been identified as a teacher and a boy. The police are investigating the incident, but believe the driver of the passenger van decided to try an cross the level crossing, despite warnings of an approaching train. Many such crossings in the Philippines are not manned, allowing fatal accents to occur. 

Two killed in Bukidnon truck accident

Two people have died and at least 33 others have also been injured after a truck crashed in the Barangay Tikalaan area of Bukidnon. The truck has apparently been transporting a large group of passengers when the accident occurred. Preliminary investigations suggest the driver of the truck crashed after losing control of the vehicle. It's believed the steering wheel malfunctioned and the driver was unable to turn the vehicle.

Four NPA rebels killed in Sorsogon gunfight

At least four suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have allegedly been killed during a gunfight with the security forces in Sorsogon. According to recent reports, the altercation occurred on Sunday morning in Barangay Tugas of the Matnog area. It's claimed a local NPA commander is thought to be among those killed in the exchange of fire. No other casualties have been reported.

Earthquake reported in Davao del Sur

A 6.9-magnitude earthquake has reportedly struck in the Davao del Sur region over the weekend. Data from the US Geological Survey (USGS) indicates the quake occurred at approximately 06:11 UCT on Sunday 15 November at a relatively shallow depth of 22.4km. The earthquake's epicentre was located around six kilometres south of Magsaysay. Due to it's shallow depth, the earthquake was widely felt throughout the Magsaysay and Matano areas; however, there was a minimal risk of landslides, with little to no area affected and no tsunami warning was issued. 

Police kill three suspected criminals in Bulacan

Three suspected criminals have reportedly been killed by the Filipino police in a recent gunfight in Bulacan. The incident occurred on Sunday evening in the Pandi area, where the police apprehended a number of suspected robbers near East De Guzman Street. According to reports, the police officers opened fire after the suspects resisted arrest. Various arms and weapons, including a hand grenade, have been recovered from the scene.

Three NPA militants killed in Rizal

Three suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have allegedly been killed in security operations in Rizal province. According to reports, the security forces had launched a raid operation on a suspected NPA militant's safe house in the Sierra Vista subdivision in Barangary Cupang, Antipolo City, during the early hours of Thursday morning. Three suspected militants allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the security forces, leading to a gunfight which left all three critically injured. The suspects all died on their way to the hospital. No other casualties have been reported.

Four injured in ASG attack in Sulu

Four people have been injured in an attack by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. According to reports, three police personnel and one member of a local peacekeeping militia were injured in an attack in Barangay Buhanginan in Patikul, Sulu. The attackers are thought to have been ASG militants.

Drug suspect killed in Cavite shooting

A suspected drug criminal has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Cavite. According to reports, a group of three suspects were apprehended by police in the Barangay Molino III area of Bacoor. One of the suspects allegedly resisted arrest and instead opened fire on officers, leading to a brief exchange of fire which left one suspect dead and two others injured. The two injured suspects have both been arrested by the police.

Suspected militant leader killed in Cotabato ambush

A suspected militant leader has apparently been killed in an ambush by the Filipino security forces in the Cotabato region. According to reports, security personnel targeted a suspected leader of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in the village of Elian in the Matalam area of Cotabato in an ambush operation launched on Tuesday.

State of emergency declared amidst floods in Isabela

A state of emergency has been declared amidst floods in Isabela after Typhoon Kammuri swept over the region earlier this week. The storm brought heavy rainfall which has led to flash floods. The Ilagan area is among the worst-affected, with at least 41 villages submerged. The local authorities made the decision to declare a state of emergency in order to release funds and resources to provide aid to some 31,047 people who have been isolated by the floods. Severe disruption throughout the region should continue to be expected for the next few days.

Typhoon Kammuri leaves 13 dead

At least 13 people have been killed in storm-related incident after Typhoon Kammuri (known locally as Tisoy) passed over the Philippines. The death toll risen as the storm exits the Philippines, having made landfall in Sorsogon on Monday night. About 345,000 people were forced to evacuate coastal and mountainous areas of central Philippines and hundreds of flights were cancelled or delayed. Five fatalities were reported in the Bicol region, including three who drowned, and one person who was electrocuted. Five more people died in Metro Manila, including three people who were trapped under fallen trees. Three others also died in two provinces in north and central Philippines.

Local official killed in Pangasinan shooting

A local official in the Rosales area of Pangasinan has reportedly been killed in a suspected shooting incident on Tuesday. The victim has been identified as 56-year-old Reynaldo Casareno, a local administration head for the village of Tomana East and the husband of the town's mayor, Susan Pagador-Casareno. According to reports, Casareno was shot several times by unidentified gunmen as he came out of his store. Four .45 calibre bullet shells were recovered from the scene. The police have launched a murder investigation, but the motive behind the shooting still remains unclear.

Security forces foil BIFF bomb plots in Maguindanao

The Filipino security forces have allegedly foiled a number of bomb plots by the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in the Maguindanao province. Senior security officials have apparently claimed that around 14 improvised explosive devices (IEDs) have been seized from suspected BIFF militants during security operations in the region throughout the last 48 hours. The raid supposedly targeted an undisclosed location in the village of Pamalian in Shariff Saydona Mustapha. Sensitive material also recovered from the site suggested the militants had planned to use the IEDs in a number of explosive attacks.

Police officer killed in shooting incident in Calamba, Laguna

A Filipino police officer has apparently been killed in a recent shooting incident in Calamba City, Laguna. According to reports, the incident occurred over the weekend, on Sunday evening in the village of Mayapa. Lieutenant Ramil Gonzales was allegedly on his way to a police camp aboard his motorbike when he was shot at. Gonzales was found seriously wounded at the scene and taken to hospital, where he later died. A police manhunt is underway for the assailant.

Thousands flee Typhoon Kammuri

Thousands of people have been evacuated as Typhoon Kammuri hits central Philippines. At least 200,000 people have been evacuated from coastal and mountainous areas due to the high risk of flooding, landslides, and storm surges. The storm made landfall on Tuesday morning, forcing flight operations at Manila airport to be suspended for 12 hours, while a number of events for the Southeast Asian Games have also been cancelled or re-scheduled. Typhoon Kammuri, locally named 'Tisoy', made landfall in the Sorsogon province, and is packing sustained winds of up to 155kmh, with gusts of up to 235kmh. Storm surges of up to three metres are expected. Preliminary reports suggest at least two people have been killed in storm-related incidents so far.

Two NPA militants detained in Lanao del Norte

Two suspected militants from the New People's Army (NPA) have apparently been detained by the Filipino security forces in Lanao del Norte. According to reports, the suspects were arrested in the Sultan Naga Dimaporo area on Sunday during a security operation. A weapons cache was also discovered in the Santo Nino area in Kapatagan town, where security personnel seized range of armed weapons and ammunition, including rifles, revolvers, gun ammunition, and a grenade launcher.

Boat sinks off Santa Cruz Island, four missing

Four people are missing after a boat has sunk off Santa Cruz Island in Zamboange del Sur. According to reports, the boat was involved in a collision with another vessel, causing it to sustain damage leading it to sink. The accident occurred on Wednesday around 2.1 nautical miles out to sea from Zamboanga city. It's believed the other vessel involved in the accident was a watercraft which had been speeding, causing the potentially fatal collision. Search and rescue teams located the boat's wreckage in waters off Barangay Sinunuc; however, as of Thursday, no survivors have been found.

Grenade blast kills two at school in Northern Mindanao

A suspected bomb explosion has apparently killed two people and injured 11 others at a school in Northern Mindandao. According to reports, the blast occurred on Thursday morning at around 11:20 local time, when the suspected assailant apparently hurled a grenade into a school campus in the Initao area of Misamis Oriental, Northern Mindanao. The fatalities have been identified as a local police officer and the suspect himself. Investigations have been launched, but the motive behind the attack currently remains unclear and no group has claimed responsibility for the incident thus far.

Three militants killed in Maguindanao

Three suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group have allegedly been killed amid recent security operations in Maguindanao. According to reports, the militants were killed by the Filipino security forces in the Barangay Pusao area of Shariff Mustapha during a raid on Tuesday. Various militant-owned firearms were also recovered from the site.

Local administrator killed in La Union shooting

A local administrator has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in La Union. According to reports, the shooting occurred in the Aringay area on Tuesday. The police are investigating the killing, which apparently took place overnight in the victim's house in the village of Pangao-aoan West. It's suspected the incident was likely a targeted attack, although the motives behind the killing still remain unclear.

Kidnapped British man and his wife rescued in Sulu

A British man and his Filipino wife have been rescued by the Filipino security forces after they were taken hostage in the southern Sulu province. According to reports, 70-year-old Allan Hyrons, a dual national, and his Filipino wife, Wilma, were captured by four armed men at a beach resort on Mindanao island last month. Their kidnappers were thought to have been members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) - an armed extremist group loyal to the Islamic State (IS) often known to kidnap foreign nationals and hold them for ransom. The armed forces allegedly engaged with the suspected militants in a gunfight in the Sulu region on Sunday, forcing the militants to flee as the hostages were rescued. It's been reported that the UK military also assisted in the operation, with a small team of British special forces personnel providing advice and planning support to aid the search.

Suspected IS militant killed in Manila

A suspected Islamic State (IS) militant has apparently been killed during security operations in Manila over the weekend. The Filipino security forces reportedly launched a counter terror operation in an undisclosed part of the capital region, targeting a suspected militant known as Talha Jumsah (aka Abu Talha). It's believed the suspect had pledged allegiance to the IS and served as a bomb-making instructor and a translator for them. It's also claimed he had likely helped plan a number of deadly suicide bomb attacks.

ASG commander killed in Sulu clashes

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) commander has allegedly been killed and two Filipino soldiers have also been injured amid clashes in the Sulu province. The clashes took place on Friday in the Patikul area, where the ASG are known to have an active presence. According to reports, the Filipino security forces encountered a number of armed ASG militants near the village of Sandah, leading to an exchange of fire which left one dead and several others injured. Military officials claim that an unknown number of militants were also injured before they fled the scene.

Man killed in Bulacan shooting

A 54-year-old man has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Bulacan. According to reports, the incident happened in the Barangay Iba area in Meycauayan, where four unidentified gunmen opened fire on the vehicle of a local businessman, leaving him dead and his driver injured. The victim had recently been to the bank where he had deposited more then a million pesos before being blocked off and fired at in what's thought to have been a planned ambush. Police investigations have been launched.

Soldier killed in Taguig shooting

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Taguig, Metro Manila. According to local reports, the soldier was apparently shot dead in a suspected case of friendly fire. An army sergeant has been detained in connection with the killing after allegedly handing himself into the police shortly after the incident. It's believed an argument broke out between the two men during the early hours of Tuesday morning at around 02:00 local time on Bayani Road. Police investigations into the incident remain ongoing, with the suspect expected to face murder charges.

Fatal shooting reported in Cebu

A fatal shooting incident has been reported in Cebu City in Central Visayas. According to local reports, the incident occurred on Thursday morning in the Barangay Carreta area, where it's believed unidentified armed assailants opened fire. At least one victim has allegedly been confirmed dead following the incident, with police saying the suspects apparently managed to flee the scene before they arrived. No suspects have been identified and no arrests have been made thus far as investigations continue.

Public storm warning issued

A public storm warning has been issued in northern Philippines for Typhoon Ramon. According to recent reports, the storm had recently strengthened from a tropical storm into a severe tropical storm; however, as of Tuesday morning, the weather system has further intensified into a typhoon and is currently moving slowly in a west-northwesterly direction towards the Babuyan Islands, north of Luzon. The Joint Typhoon Warning Centre has estimated the storm is moving at about four kph and is expected to weaken over the next 24 hours. Strong winds and heavy rainfall is forecast for much of northern Philippines, with the likelihood of travel disruption and possible flash flooding or landslides. 

Grenade attack injures three in Cotabato

Three casualties have been reported following a grenade attack in Cotabato. The incident occurred in the Aleosan area, where a number of unidentified attackers allegedly hurled a grenade at the victims in Barangay Bagolibas before fleeing the scene. Police investigations have been launched to determine the motive behind the attack. The perpetrators remain unknown and no suspects have been identified thus far.

Three dead in Central Luzon shop fire

At least three fatalities have been reported following a shop fire in Central Luzon. According to recent reports, the fire broke out on Wednesday morning in a shop selling car parts in Olongapo. It's believed the deceased have been identified as Mariano and Aira Panganiban, and their son, Ricardo. The family reportedly died shortly after the fire broke out at around 05:00 local time. The fire continued to burn for another five hours, with fire crews finally extinguishing the blaze at around 10:00. Investigations into the cause of the fire remain ongoing.

Three killed in Maguindanao clashes

Three fatalities have been reported following a clash between the Filipino security forces and suspected militants in Maguindanao. Fighting allegedly broke out in the Mamasapano area over the weekend, as the security forces launched operations against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group. It's believed at least two of the three fatalities have been identified as BIFF militants, while the third fatality has been confirmed as a Filipino soldier. At least five others were also wounded in the clash.

Seven killed in armed clash in Eastern Samar

At least seven fatalities have been reported following an armed clash between the Filipino security forces and suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Eastern Samar. According to local reports, one NPA rebel and six Filipino security personnel have been confirmed dead, while a further 20 others have allegedly been wounded. The clash reportedly occurred on Monday afternoon, at around 17:00 local time, in the Barangay Pinanag-an, near Borongan City.

Four killed in anti-drugs raids

Four suspected drug criminals have apparently been killed in anti-drugs raids in Bulacan. The raids were carried out by the Filipino security forces earlier this week over the course of several days. At least two suspects were reportedly killed in a crossfire during a raid in the village of Gaya-Gaya in the San Jose Del Monte area on Tuesday, while another suspect was also killed in another raid on Tuesday, this time in the village of Guyong in Santa Maria. A fourth suspected drug criminal was killed in a third raid operation on Thursday evening in the village of Tigbe in the Norzagaray area.

Flash floods leave three dead in Cagayan

At least three people have been killed and two others remain missing following fatal flash floods in the Cagayan province. According to reports, the floods were triggered by a severe tropical storm which has brought heavy rainfall to the region over the last 48 hours. Among some of the worst affected areas include the towns of Allacapan and Claveria, where thousands of people have been affected and a state of emergency has been declared.

Man shot dead in Dumaguete City

A man has reportedly been shot dead in a shooting incident in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental. According to reports, the victim was found dead on Thursday morning on Hibbard Avenue, in the Piapi area of the city. The victim has apparently been identified as 57-year-old Dindo Generoso, a local radio broadcaster. Generoso was in his car on his way to work when he was ambushed by a lone gunman, who fired several shots through the victim's car window before fleeing the scene. The police have launched a murder investigation and are still working to determine the motive behind the killing. No suspects have been arrested thus far.

Two killed in Marawi shooting

Two people have been killed and a third person has been injured following a shooting incident in the town of Marawi in Lanao del Sur. According to local reports, the incident occurred on Thursday morning at around 07:00 local time along a highway near the village of Emmie Punud. Both of the fatalities have been identified as construction workers. The police have launched an investigation into the shooting; however, no arrests have been thus far and the motive behind the incident remains unclear.

Three NPA rebels killed in Quezon clash

Three suspected New Peoples Army (NPA) rebels have allegedly been killed in a recent clash with the Filipino security forces in Quezon. Local reports indicate the clash occurred in the Mauban area of Quezon, near the village of Abu Abu, where the security forces came across a number of armed NPA rebels. The rebels reportedly opened fire on the security personnel first, leading to a fatal crossfire in which three rebels were left dead while the others escaped.

Suspect killed in police shooting

A criminal suspect has allegedly been killed in a police shooting incident in Basilan. The incident occurred in the Lamitan area on Monday, when the police were called to respond to reports of suspected criminals in Barangay Limook. According to reports, the suspects violently resisted arrest, prompting the police to open fire, leaving one suspect dead while the other two fled. A police officer was also severely wounded in the altercation.

Three suspected terrorists killed in Sulu

Three suspected terrorists have allegedly been killed in security operations in the southern Sulu province. According to reports, the suspects are thought to have had links to the Islamic State (IS) and were apparently intercepted at a security checkpoint near Indanan on Tuesday. The security operation was carried out by the Filipino security forces based on intelligence which indicated that the suspects were plotting a suicide bomb attack in Jolo. At least two of the three suspects have been identified as Egyptian nationals.

Village chief shot dead in Bulacan

A Filipino village chief has allegedly been shot dead in Bulacan. Rosteo Salao, village chief for Barangay Lapnit, was driving his motorbike in San Ildefonso on Monday morning when he was shot in the head from behind by unidentified gunmen who had apparently been tailing him. According to reports, Salao is the second village chief to be killed in San Ildefonso, after Felimon Santos, of Barangay Malipampang, was shot dead outside a store by unidentified gunmen last month.

Nationwide tsunami and earthquake drill to be held

A nationwide earthquake and tsunami drill is due to be held across the Philippines on Thursday 14 November. The drills will be conducted by the Philippines Institute of Volcanology and Seismology at 09:00 local time. The decision to hold the nationwide drill was made following a series of fatal earthquakes across various parts of the Philippines in recent weeks, including a 6.5-magnitude quake in Cotabato and a 6.6-magnitude earthquake in Davao.

Three rebel political activists detained in Manila

Three rebel political activists have apparently been detained by the Filipino security forces in the Tonda area of Manila. According to reports, the trio were targeted in an early morning raid at an office used by the political organisation, Bayan (New Nationalist Alliance), located on Clemente Street in the Barangay 183. The arrests are the latest in a spate of similar detentions, with more than 50 other rebel activists also arrested in operations last month.

Soldier killed in Quezon IED blast

A soldier of the Filipino army has reportedly been killed in a blast from an improvised explosive device (IED) in Quezon. The explosion occurred in Barangay Santa Rosa of the Lopez area on Sunday. According to reports, no claim of responsibility has been made for the IED blast as of yet; however, the local authorities suspect that New People's Army (NPA) militants were likely behind it.

Two militants killed in Pattani

Two suspected Islamist militants have allegedly been killed in recent security operations in the Pattani province. According to reports, the operations were conducted by the Filipino security forces over the weekend in the Sai Buri district. The security forces allegedly came across a number of armed militants in the Paseyawor area of the district during the early hours, leading to a deadly clash in which two of the suspects died. A roadside bomb was also defused by the security forces during the operation.

Two killed in Bulacan drugs raid

Two suspected drug criminals have allegedly been killed in a drug raid in the San Jose Del Monte area of Bulacan. According to reports, a group of eight suspects were apprehended during the raid operation in the Sitio Pakulis area of Barangay Gaya-Gaya. Some of the suspects allegedly resisted arrest and instead opened fire on the Filipino police, leading to a deadly shootout which left two suspects dead, while six others were arrested. Various firearms, ammunition, and drugs have  been confiscated from the site.

Road accident leave 19 dead in Apayao

At least 19 people have been killed and 22 others have also been injured following a road accident in Apayao. According to reports, the accident occurred in the Conner area on Thursday evening at around 19:00 local time. It's believed a truck driver lost control of his vehicle, causing the small truck to veer off the road, crashing into a ravine below. The truck's engine allegedly stopped suddenly whilst the vehicle was climbing an uphill road in Barangay Karikitan, causing the vehicle to roll backwards, off the road and into the 20-metre-deep ravine. Investigations also found that the truck's brakes failed and the driver apparently lost control of the steering wheel.

Two killed in Lanao del Sur shootout

At least two fatalities have been reported in Lanao del Sur following a shootout. The incident allegedly occurred in Barangay Lilod of Marawi, where the police were apparently apprehending a number of suspected drug dealers. The suspects reportedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police officers during the raid, leading to a fatal shootout which left one police officer and one suspected drug dealer dead. Another police officer was also wounded while six suspects were arrested.

Earthquake hits near Kisante, Cotabato

A 6.5-magnitude earthquake has reportedly hit near Kisante in the Cotabato province. Local reports indicate the earthquake was felt throughout the Cotabato and Mindanao provinces and that at least three people have been killed and eight others have been injured. According to data from the USGS, the quake occurred at around 01:11 UTC on Thursday, with it's epicentre located approximately one kilometre south of Kisante. The earthquake had a shallow depth of just 10km. The quake comes just days after a deadly 6.6-magnitude earthquake hit the Davao region.

Journalist injured in Sultan Kudarat shooting

A Filipino radio journalist has reportedly been critically injured in a shooting incident in Sultan Kudarat. The incident was reported on Wednesday afternoon from the Tacurong area, where it's believed the victim was targeted by unidentified gunmen in Barangay New Isabela. The victim has been identified as Bejnie Caballero, the station manager at Radyo ni Juan and the president of the Sultan Kudarat Provincial Task Force on Media Security. Caballero was allegedly waiting at the side of the road when one of the suspects got off a motorbike, walked towards him and shot him in the chest. The police are investigating the attack, which they believed to be politically-motivated.

Davao earthquake death toll rises

The death toll from a 6.6-magnitude earthquake which hit the southern Davao region yesterday has reportedly risen to seven, with many more injured. According to recent reports, the victims include a seven-year-old boy and his 44-year-old father, who both died after they were struck by a boulder. Data from the USGS shows the quake hit at 01:04 UTC, with its epicentre located around 14km east of Bual, at a shallow depth of 15.3km, meaning tremors were widely felt. The death toll could continue to rise further over the next few days as search and rescue operations continue.

Forest ranger killed by gunman in Nueva Ecija

An unidentified gunman has apparently shot dead a Filipino forest ranger in the Nueva Ecija province. According to reports, the forest ranger was shot dead in the Munoz area of Nueva Ecija over the weekend. The police have launched an investigation into the murder; however, no suspects have been identified thus far and no arrests have been made. The incident is the latest in a spate of similar attacks, with the ranger being the third fatality in seemingly unprovoked gun attacks on environmental workers so far this year.

Police officer killed in Rizal gun attack

A Filipino police officer has apparently been killed in a gun attack in Rizal. According to reports, a number of unidentified gunmen opened fire on the police officer in Barangay San Jose of Antipolo, leaving him dead at the scene before they escaped. The shooting is thought to have been a targeted attack against the police by suspected militants; however, investigations into the killing remain ongoing. No arrests have been made thus far.

Seven suspected militants killed in North Cotabato clash

At least seven suspected militants have allegedly been killed in recent clashes with the Filipino security forces in North Cotabato. The deceased are thought to have been members of the Islamic State (IS)-affiliated Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group. The fighting took place on Wednesday near Sitio Narra in the Barangay Tumbras area of Midsayap. According to reports, as many as seven firearms were confiscated from the site of the gunfight,a long with various explosives.

Man killed in Batangas shooting

A ma has reportedly been confirmed dead following a shooting incident in the Batangas province. The incident happened at around 14:00 local time on Tuesday afternoon in the Nasugbu area of Batangas, near a resort in Barangay Natipuan. According to local reports, the police have launched a murder investigation and have detained a suspect in connection with the case.

Houses destroyed in Santa Cruz fire, Manila

A number of houses have reportedly been destroyed after a fire broke out in a residential area of Santa Cruz in Manila. The blaze allegedly broke out late on Tuesday morning, just before midday, on Quiricida Street. The emergency services have responded to the scene, with several fire trucks deployed to extinguish the fire. The houses went up quickly due to being made from light, combustible materials. No casualties have been reported.

Police clash with NPA in Isabela

Violent clashes have been reported between the Filipino police and the New People's Army (NPA) militant group in the Isabela province. Recent reports indicate the fighting broke out in the Burgos area on Tuesday morning, at around 05:30 local time. It's claimed the police were attacked by NPA militants whilst out on patrol, leading to a deadly gunfight. At least one police official has been confirmed dead as a result of the fighting, while another three have also been injured.

Two killed in Rizal shooting

Two people, including an 11-year-old girl, have been shot dead and three others have also been injured following a shooting incident in the Rizal province. According to local reports, the incident occurred on Saturday evening in the town of Baras, where an unidentified gunman allegedly targeted a number of local residents in the Pinugay area before fleeing the scene. Apparently the victims had been outside playing games on their mobile phones using a free wifi signal from their neighbour when they were attacked. The police are investigating the incident, with a motive yet to be established.

Two killed in Antique shooting

Two people have reportedly been killed and four others have been wounded following a shooting incident in Antique on Monday morning. Reports from News Info indicate that the shooting took place in the town of San Jose, where Venom Dio - the owner of a local water refilling station - allegedly got into an altercation with Erven James Checa, a computer shop owner. The argument escalated when Dio brandished a gun at Checa's brother. By the time the police responded to the scene, both brothers has already been shot, along with another person, before engaging with the police in a shootout. The fatalities have been identified as Erven James Checa and 24-year-old Ana Anacleto, while Stephen Checa and two police officers suffered injuries following the incident. The gunman also suffered minor wounds to the leg and has now been arrested.

Two killed in Zambales shooting

Two people have been killed and a third person has been wounded in a shooting incident in Zambales. The incident occurred over the weekend in the Olongapo area, where the victims were allegedly attacked by an armed suspect along Rizal Avenue. The police have responded to the attack and launched a murder investigation. A suspect, who has only been identified as an Australian national, has reportedly been arrested in connection with the incident, although the motive behind the shooting still remains unclear as investigations go forward.

Twenty-six NPA militants surrender in Quezon

At least 26 New People's Army (NPA) militants have apparently handed themselves in to the authorities in Quezon. The surrenders were allegedly made over the last few days in General Nakar, with 22 NPA militants handing themselves over to the police on Wednesday 16 October and an additional four others following suit on Thursday 17 October. Approximately 10 firearms were also surrendered, along with ammunition and various material used to make explosives. The group will be offered rehabilitation including housing and education scholarship under the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration program, which aims to reintegrate former militants and rebels back into law-abiding society.

Two drug suspects killed in anti-narcotics raids

Two suspected drug criminals have allegedly been killed during anti-narcotics raids which have been carried out recently by the Filipino security forces in the Laguna and Cavite provinces. The pair were reportedly under investigation for suspected drug pushing and were killed in separate operations on Thursday. According to reports, one suspect was shot dead after he opened fire on the police in Santa Cruz, Laguna, while the second suspect died in a similar incident later that same day in the village of Pasong Kawayan 2 in General Trias City, Cavite.

Earthquake death toll rises to five

The death toll for a 6.4-magnitude earthquake which hit the Philippines yesterday has reportedly risen to five confirmed fatalities. The earthquake hit the North Cotabato region on Wednesday evening, causing widespread damage throughout the region. Initially very few casualties were reported; however, the death toll has risen since then as rescue teams have gradually reached more remote and rural areas.

Major earthquake hits Mindanao

A powerful 6.4-magnitude earthquake has hit Mindanao island. According to data collected by the US Geological Survey (USGS), the quake occurred at around 11:37 UTC on Wednesday 16 October, at a shallow depth of 14.1km. The earthquake's epicentre was located approximately seven kilometres east-north-east of Columbio. Due to the earthquake's shallow depth, tremors were widely felt, and some damage has been reported to buildings and infrastructure in the region. Power cuts have been reported in some regions and strong aftershocks have also been recorded, although there have been no immediate reports of casualties.

Election official killed in Leyte

A Filipino election official has allegedly been shot dead in a gun attack in the Leyte province. Local reports indicate the victim has been identified as 42-year-old Maureen Palejaro - a town poll executive for MacArthur. The shooting occurred on Tuesday in the village of Pongon in the MacArthur area, where Palejaro was on board a motorbike driven by her co-worker when the suspects blocked their way and shot her several times, hitting her in different parts of her body. Palejaro's co-worker remains unharmed following the incident, while the two suspects allegedly fled the scene and are thought to have escaped to the nearby town of Abuyog. The motive behind the incident remains unclear as police investigations continue.

Security operations kill three NPA militants in Northern Samar

Three suspected militants from the New Peoples Army (NPA) have reportedly been killed in recent security operations in Northern Samar. According to reports, the operations were carried out by the Filipino security forces over the weekend, targeting a suspected NPA presence in the Las Navas area of Northern Samar. The operation was launched after security personnel received intelligence reports of militant activity in the area. An armed encounter with a small group of NPA militants allegedly broke out, leading to the deaths of three suspects, while various firearms were also seized from the site of the clash.

Two killed in violent attacks in Bicol

Two people have been killed in violent attacks in the Bicol region. According to reports, two separate incidents were reported within hours of each other over the weekend. In Sorsogon, a man was killed in a stabbing incident, which allegedly occurred shortly after midnight, at 00:45 local time on Sunday morning. Just over an hour later, at around 02:00, a man was found dead with gunshot wounds in the Camarines Sur area following a suspected shooting incident. The police have launched investigations into both incidents, with no known suspects identified thus far.

Drug war chief quits amid narcotics scandal

A top drug war chief has reportedly resigned amid drug-related allegations. Oscar Albayalde has quit amid an investigation into allegations that he protected officers accused of selling large amounts of seized drugs. Although the original scandal was before Albayalde's time as national police chief, it's claimed that when he served as province commander, he protected certain officers from discipline and may have also received money from drug sales. Albayalde was due to retire next month, having served as national police chief since April last year.

House fire kills three in Quezon City

Three people have reportedly died in a house fire in Quezon City, Metro Manila. According to local reports, the blaze broke out in the early hours of Friday morning at around 02:13 local time. The fire affected a property on Raja Matanda corner near Katipunan Avenue in the Blue Ridge A area. It allegedly took fire crews almost 50 minutes to extinguish the fire, which claimed the lives of three people and left a fourth person injured.

Explosion hits maximum security compound in Muninlupa City

An explosion has been reported at the New Bilivid Prison maximum security compound in Muntinlupa City. The blast occurred on Friday morning, with preliminary police investigations suggesting it may have come from an improvised explosive device (IED). It's believed the IED went off in Quadrant 4 of the prison compound, where terrorists and rebels are detained, including members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), Maute, Jemaah Islamiyah, and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). Two hand grenades and two blasting caps have been recovered from cells in the quadrant, prompting suspicions the explosion wasn't linked to demolition operations which are underway in Quadrant 1. No casualties have been reported as a result of the blast. Investigations remain ongoing.

Hundreds detained in huge anti-fraud operation

Hundreds of foreign nationals have been detained by the Filipino authorities in a huge anti-fraud operation. Over the last few days, around 542 foreign nationals have been arrested on suspicion of fraud in the capital city of Manila. According to reports, most of the suspects have been identified as Chinese nationals, along with some from Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Taiwan, and Vietnam. It's believed the suspects had largely been targeted Chinese victims from abroad.

Vice Mayor of Masbate killed in Manila shooting

The Vice Mayor of Masbate town, Charlie Yuson III, has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Manila. The attack occurred on Wednesday evening at around 08:45 local time in the Sampaloc area of the capital city. Recent reports indicate that Yuson had been having breakfast at a restaurant with two companions on VG Cruz Street when three armed assailants stormed the place and opened fire. Yuson was taken to hospital, but succumbed to his wounds, while both his companions were also injured. The incident is thought to have been a targeted gun attack, although the motive has not yet been reported. Four arrests have reportedly been made in connection with the incident, after the van used by the assailants was tracked down by the police.

Fisherman killed by crocodile in Palawan

A fisherman has reportedly been killed by a saltwater crocodile in the Palawan province. According to reports, the extraordinarily large crocodile grabbed the 20-year-old fisherman from his small boat in waters just off Balabac island. The victim had been fishing with another person in the boat and they were on their way back to the island after a day of fishing when the crocodile attacked. Regional police have confirmed the attack, stating that the crocodile was estimated to be almost five metres in length, making it abnormally large. The incident comes amid a spate of similar attacks around the island recently.

Security operation kills IS militant in Sulu

A counter-insurgency operation carried out by the Filipino security forces in the southern Sulu province has allegedly left one Islamic State (IS) militant killed and another injured. According to reports, the operation was conducted over the last few days in the Talipao area of Sulu. An armed clashed reportedly broke out between the security forces and a group of around 30 armed IS militants. The gunfight left one militant dead and a second injured, while the rest fled the scene. Various weapons and firearms were recovered from the site of the clash.

Six IS suspects surrender in Lanao del Sur

At least six suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have allegedly surrendered to the local authorities in Lanao del Sur. According to reports, the suspects are thought to have links to the IS and reportedly handed themselves in to the police in Lumba Bayabao on Monday. The suspects were supposedly members of an IS-affiliated group led by Mahdie Maute and were based in the village of Lumbac Bacayawan. Various firearms, weapons, and ammunition were also turned over to the police.

Seven MILF rebels killed in Maguindanao clash

At least seven suspected members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have allegedly been killed following an armed altercation with pro-Islamic State (IS) terrorist group, Dawlah Islamiyah. According to reports, the MILF rebels were attacked by the militants at their camp near the town of Shariff Saydona Mustapha in Maguindanao. No other casualties have been reported and no arrests have yet been made.

Two kidnapped in Zamboanga del Sur

Two people have been kidnapped by suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in Zamboanga del Sur. The two hostage are reportedly thought to have been captured by armed ASG militants sometime last week, most likely on Friday evening. According to reports, the victims have been identified as a male British national and his wife, who is a Filipino national. It's alleged that the pair were abducted in the Tukuran area. No ransom remands have been made.

Soldier killed in Marawi shooting

A Filipino soldier has allegedly been killed in a shooting incident which occurred in Marawi, Lanao del Sur. According to reports, the incident occurred on Sunday afternoon at around 14:30 local time in the village of Basak Malutlut. It's alleged that the soldier was attacked in what's thought to have been a targeted gun attack, as an unidentified armed assailant opened fire on him whilst travelling along the national highway, which runs through the city. An investigation into the shooting has been launched; however, no suspects have been identified thus far. It's likely the attack was connected to Islamist militants.

Government offices evacuated amid bomb scare in Baguio City

An alleged bomb scare has apparently triggered the evacuation of a government agency building in Baguio City. The Lyman Ogilby Building, on Magsaysay Avenue, was allegedly alerted to the possibility of a bomb threat on Friday morning, shortly before noon. According to reports, the entire building was evacuated as the police responded to the threat. The building serves as offices for a number of government agencies, including the Cooperatives Development Authority, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples, and the National Nutrition Council. The police cleared the area and assess the threat to be over within half an hour of arriving at the scene.

Thunderstorm warning issued for Metro Manila

A thunderstorm warning has been issued for Metro Manila and surrounding areas. The weather advisory has been issued by the state weather department ahead of heavy rain and thunderstorms which are forecast to affect the Metro Manila region and nearby provinces over the course of the next 24 hours. According to reports, the adverse weather will impact parts of Bataan, Nueva Ecija, Rizal, and Quezon, as well as Metro Manila, where torrential rain may cause widespread disruption. The Batangas, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Pampagna provinces are also likely to be affected. There will be a heightened risk of flash floods and landslides, with the potential for severe travel disruption.

Two killed in Manila City Jail riot

Two people have allegedly been killed and some 32 others have been injured after a gang riot broke out in Manila City Jail. The riot was reportedly sparked by an argument between two inmates from rival gangs: the Batang City Jail gang and the Sputnik gang. According to reports from Al Jazeera, the riot forced the prison authorities to seal the jail off. the situation was likely worsened by the fact that the jail is over capacity housing almost six times it's maximum of 1,100 inmates. As a result of the overcrowding, the number of guards stationed at the jail is also well below the advised international standards, which recommend a ratio of one prison guard to every seven inmates. It's estimated that the prison is operating on a basis of one guard to 200 inmates. It's argued that the problem has partially stemmed from the exponential increase in arrests since President Rodrigo Duterte's so-called 'war on drugs' was launched three years ago.

One killed, 196 arrested in police operations

At least one suspected criminal has been killed and some 196 others have been arrested during recent police operations in the Quezon province. According to reports, the operations targeted dozens of suspected criminals across 41 towns and cities in Quezon throughout the period of three days between 21 and 23 September. Most of the detainees face charges related to drug crime. It's alleged that the suspect who was shot dead was killed by police officers after they resisted arrest and opened fire.

Gunfight reported in Mountain Province

A gunfight has reportedly broken out in the Mountain Province, leaving at least one security personnel dead and a second wounded. The crossfire took place in the Agid area of Sagada, where it's believed the Filipino security forces encountered a number of armed New Peoples Army (NPA) militants just before midday on Thursday. It's suspected that the militants opened fire first, triggering a fatal exchange of fire; however, details regarding the incident still remain unclear.

Seven dead after boat capsizes off Aklan

At least seven people have been killed after their boat capsized off the coast of Akan on Wednesday morning. The accident reportedly occurred in waters off Sitio Lingganay, in Barangay Manoc-manoc of Boracay Island. The police have confirmed the accident, while local reports have indicated the vessel was being used by the Boracay Dragon Boat Team at the time. An investigation into the accident has been launched to determine precisely what caused the boat to capsize.

Three IS militants detained in Sultan Kudarat

Three suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have reportedly been detained by the Filipino security forces in Sultan Kudarat. According to recent reports, the arrests were made in the Bagumbayan area during a counter militancy operation targeting a number of suspected militants thought to be linked to the IS. One of the suspects has allegedly been identified as Swedish national Hassan Akgun, a known member of an IS cell linked to several bomb attacks in Sultan Kudarat. Various firearms and explosives were also discovered and seized during the operation.

Three police wounded in Oriental Mindoro ambush

Three police officers have been wounded in an ambush in Oriental Mindoro. Police Chief Master Sergeant Ivan Fortus, Police Senior Master Sergeant Irene Lazo and Police Corporal Ivy Carmona were targeted in Socorro on Tuesday morning. The victims were taken to the Oriental Mindoro Provincial Hospital for treatment. The identity of the assailants has not yet been confirmed and investigations are still ongoing.

Police officer shot dead in Davao del Norte

A police officer has been shot dead in Davao del Norte province. Patrolman Alfie Alcano, 28, was targeted by a lone gunman in San Isidro on Tuesday. Brig. Gen. Marcelo Morales denounced the attack and suggested that the CPP-NPA rebel group was responsible for it.

Two feared dead in Manila hotel collapse

Two people are feared dead following a building collapse at a hotel in Manila. According to reports, two workers were working on a demolition project on a hotel in the Malate area of the capital city, at Hotel Sogo on Mabini Street. The collapse occurred on Monday morning, with search and rescue operations still underway. the cause of the accident remains unclear.

Second case of Polio confirmed in Laguna

A second case of polio has reportedly been confirmed by the authorities in Laguna. The disease was apparently detected in a patient this week, with the Filipino health department confirming the latest case on Friday morning. According to reports, the patient has been identified as a five-year-old boy, whose diagnosis comes just a day after the first polio case in 19 years was reported on Thursday - a three-year-old girl in Lanao del Sur. The emergence of the two cases some 870 miles apart has concerned health officials, who are preparing to vaccinate millions of children against the disease in a bid to prevent an outbreak.

Three terror suspects detained in Lanao del Sur

Three suspected terrorists have reportedly been detained by the Filipino security forces in Lanao del Sur. The suspects are thought to have links to the Islamic State (IS), with the police claiming the three detainees are thought to be members of a local IS-affiliated militant group. The arrests were made on Wednesday in Barangay Paridi of Piagapo, Lanao del Sur. A brief gunfight allegedly broke out between the security forces and the suspects after they resisted arrest, but not casualties have been reported and the arrests were eventually made. 

Tropical depression causes flight disruption in Manila

Flight disruption has been reported in Manila due to a tropical depression. The stormy weather has forced some domestic flights to be cancelled at Terminal 3 at Manila's Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Among the flights affected is the Cebu Pacific airlines service connecting Manila to Tuguegarao. Tropical Depression Nimfa was last spotted some 700km east of Basco, Batanes and is currently packing maximum sustained winds of 55kph and gusts of up to 70kph. Light to heavy rain accompanied by thunderstorms have also been forecast for the Metro Manila and Luzon areas.

Mapua University suspends classes over bomb threat

Classes have allegedly been suspended at Mapua University over an alleged bomb threat. According to reports, classes at the university's Makati and Intramuros campuses were suspended on Thursday, with students and employees asked to vacate the premises. The alarm was raised after the Student Discipline Secretary of the Makati campus allegedly received a threatening text message from an unknown number, warning school administration that the university would be bombed within three hours. The situation has since been declared safe, although investigations remain ongoing.

Earthquake hits near Sarangani, Davao Occidental

A 5,4-magnitude earthquake has reportedly hit near Sarangani in Davao Occidental. The quake allegedly occurred at around 15:01 local time on Wednesday, with its epicentre located approximately 128km south-east of Sarangani. A warning has been issued to local residents throughout the surrounding areas over the continue risk of aftershocks. The earthquake's depth was measured at 41km and it was tectonic in origin - meaning there was movement in the Earth's crust which caused the quake. No casualties or damage has been reported.

IS militant detained in General Santos City

An Islamic State (IS) militant has allegedly been detained by the Filipino security forces in General Santos City. The arrest was apparently made during a raid operation in Barangay Bawing on Tuesday. According to reports, numerous weapons and explosives were confiscated during the raid, as well as an IS flag. It's believed the suspect was a member of IS-affiliated militant group, Ansar al-Khilafah, and may have pledged allegiance to the IS.

Road accident leaves 20 dead in South Cotabato

A massive road accident has allegedly killed at least 20 people in South Cotabato. Local reports indicate the crash occurred on Tuesday morning at around 10:30 local time in Barangay Lamsalome near the town of T'boli. It's been reported that a truck loaded with dozens of passengers veered off the road and plunged into a deep ravine. Search and rescue operations have been launched, with several casualties taken to the hospital. It remains unclear why the driver lost control of the vehicle; however, it's likely linked to a combination of factors, including the truck being overloaded, poor road and vehicle safety standards, reckless driving, and the dangerous mountain terrain.

Man shot dead in suspected militant attack, North Cotabato

A man has reportedly been shot dead in a suspected militant attack in North Cotabato over the weekend. The shooting occurred on Saturday in Magpet, where it's believed armed militants belonging to the New People's Army (NPA) militant group opened fire on the victim and killed him. Local reports indicate the man was targeted by the militants because he was suspected of being a police informer. 

Nearly 300 Chinese nationals arrested for online scams

Hundreds of Chinese nationals have been arrested by the Filipino immigration officials for suspected involvement in online scams. According to reports, at least 277 Chinese nationals have been detained on suspicion of online investment fraud. More than 1,000 Chinese nationals in mainland China have been targeted in the scam, which was run by an online investment scam syndicate being operated out of Pasig City in Metro Manila. The raid was coordinated with the Chinese authorities and originally only ordered the arrests of four Chinese suspects, but resulted in many more arrests as some 273 others were apparently caught "in the act of conducting illegal online operations".

Tropical depression to bring adverse weather to the Philippines

Adverse weather has been forecast across parts of the Philippines as weather experts predict that a tropical depression will hit the country in the next day or so. According to forecasts, the weather system will bring heavy rains to parts of the Luzon, Calabarzon, Bicol, Visayas, Mimaropa, and Zamboanga regions, as well as other areas, including the capital region of Metro Manila. Widespread disruption is likely and there will also be a heightened risk of flash floods and landslides.

Five bodyguards killed in Pangasinan ambush

Five bodyguards for former congressman Amado Espino Jr have been killed in an armed ambush in Pangasinan. According to reports, Espino's vehicle was targeted by unidentified suspects in Barangay Magtaking, San Carlos City on Wednesday afternoon. It's alleged that two other vehicles blocked the target vehicle's way before armed suspects opened fire. All five of Espino's bodyguards were allegedly shot and killed whilst shielding Espino, who is now reported to be in critical condition in hospital. The police have launched investigations to track down the perpetrators, although no suspects have been identified thus far.

ASG militant killed in clash with security forces

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been killed following a violent clash with the Filipino security forces in the Sulu province on Tuesday. The clash occurred near the town of Patikul, where the security forces had been carrying out a military operation targeting suspected ASG militants following reports of militant activity in the area. According to reports, the security forces encountered a group of around 40 suspected militants, leading to a brief firefight in which one militant was killed and three soldiers were injured.

One killed in highway shooting incident

At least one person has been killed, while a second person has been injured in a shooting incident which occurred along a national highway near Barangay Kenram in Sultan Kudarat last night. Two men were allegedly on a stationary motorbike when they were fired at by unidentified assailants on another motorbike. Recent reports indicate that an improvised explosive device (IED) was also found near the two men who were shot. An investigation has been launched to determine if the two men were carrying the IED.

Two militants killed in clash with security forces in Caraga

Two suspected militants have reportedly been killed following an armed clash with the Filipino security forces in Caraga. The altercation occurred during a security operation which had been launched in the Agusan del Sur area on Sunday 08 September. According to reports, heavy fighting broke out, forcing more than 200 residents from a nearby village to evacuate. The militants are thought to have been members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group.

African swine fever outbreak confirmed

An outbreak of African swine fever has been confirmed in the Philippines, as the authorities order more than 7,400 pigs to be culled in the first of several measures to be taken against the outbreak, with the aim to prevent further spread of the disease. The outbreak was confirmed on Monday after a herd of dead pigs tested positive for the disease. The pigs were located near Manila, with culls being focused on nearby farms in Rizal and Bulacan.

MILF rebels handover weapons in peace deal

Fighters from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have handed over their weapons as part of a peace deal. More than 900 weapons were handed in on Saturday to foreign monitors as part of a decommissioning process. An estimated 150,000 people have been killed in the decades-long insurgency against the government.

Police officer killed in Quezon City

A Filipino police officer has reportedly been killed during an encounter with suspected criminals in Quezon City.  According to reports, the altercation occurred on Thursday on Taal Street in Barangay Alicia, where the police had been called out to respond to reports of suspected criminals operating in the area. It's claimed the officers encountered two unidentified armed suspects, who resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, shooting one of the officers before fleeing the scene. An investigation into the incident has been launched and remains ongoing, although no suspects have been identified thus far.

Forest officer killed in Palawan clash

A Filipino forest officer has been killed in a clash in Palawan. The officer was reportedly killed in an armed altercation with a group of suspected illegal loggers in a forested area near Barangay Pasadena in El Nido, Palawan. The incident occurred on Thursday when the forest officers were carrying out a routine patrol in the area and encountered the suspects, who allegedly opened fire on the officers first, sparking a fatal clash.

Village chief killed in Isabela ambush

A village chief in the Isabela province of Luzon has reportedly been killed in an armed attack on Wednesday. The victim has been identified as Manuel Ramento - village chief of Bubug village. Ramento was accompanied by three others when he was ambushed in Barangay Bagabag by a number of unidentified assailants. According to reports, the attackers shot the village chief dead on the spot and left the other three people injured before fleeing the scene. The police are yet to determine the motive behind the attack.

Teenage girl killed in violent sexual assault in Digos City

A teenage girl has been killed and another has been wounded after they were attacked in a violent sexual assault in Digos City, Davao del Sur. The incident occurred in the early hours of Monday morning, when the two high school students were on their way home from a disco party at Dalawinon village gym. According to reports, the 18-year-old suspect - along with four other boys - offered to give the girls a lift on their motorbikes, but then pulled over near a creek and made sexual advances on the two girls, who initially ran away but were chased down by one of the boys. The suspect is accused of stabbing both girls multiple times, killing one and leaving the other critically injured.

Soldier killed in Basilan ambush

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed, while another soldier has also been wounded after they were ambushed by a criminal group in Basilan. The soldiers were allegedly attacked by suspected members of the Anjabins criminal group in Lamitan City on Sunday night. Both soldiers were on a motorbike en route to the town of Ungkaya Pukan when they were shot at by the suspected criminals. The same group is thought to be responsible for an attack on the 74th Infantry Battalion earlier this year. It believed the attacks are retaliation following the arrest of Anjabins member Jerry Anjabin in the town of Mohammad Ajul last year.

Student killed in violent attack

A young man has reportedly been killed in a violent attack in Negros Oriental. The incident allegedly occurred in Barangay Bolocboloc in the Sibulan area over the weekend. It's been reported that the deceased has been identified as 20-year-old student, Joshua Philip Partosa, who was shot at and stabbed to death by a group of four unidentified men. The suspects fled the scene on two motorbikes immediately after the targeted attack. The police believe the killing was motivated by a vendetta against the victim after he was linked to another stabbing last month.

Suspected criminal killed in Cavite shootout

A suspected criminal has reportedly been killed in a shootout in Imus City, Cavite. The suspect, identified as Frankie Mark Serrano, was allegedly the leader of a local criminal gang operating in Imus City. According to reports, Serrano engaged police officers in a shootout at his hideout in Barangay Malagasang II-G on Thursday evening. The security forces had responded to the address to serve an arrest warrant for Serrano; however, the suspect reportedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police officers, triggering a fatal gunfight.

Dengue outbreak triggers state of emergency in Albay

A state of emergency has been declared in the Albay province of the Bicol region amidst an outbreak of dengue fever. According to reports, the health authorities declared the state of emergency on Tuesday 13 August as the number of cases and dengue-related deaths reported in the region continues to rise. At least 3,055 cases of dengue fever have been reported in the area since the beginning of the year - 12 of which have been fatal. Tourists have been advised not to visit dengue hot spots and to take precaution against being bitten by mosquitoes, which transmit the disease.

Man killed in Caloocan stabbing

A man has been killed and another has been injured in a stabbing incident in in Caloocan, Metro Manila. Local reports indicate that the two victims had been drinking together in the Balong Silang area (aka Barangay 176) when an argument allegedly broke out and they were attacked by an armed suspect. The suspect later turned himself into the police and is expected to face criminal charges.

Three killed in ASG ambush in Sulu

Three people - two Filipino soldiers and one civilian - have been killed and two children have also been wounded following a violent ambush attack in the southern Sulu province. The ambush occurred on Monday in Barangay Kahay near Talipao. According to reports, suspected Aby Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants ambushed the Filipino security forces in an armed attack, leaving two dead along with one civilian, while a two-year-old and an 11-year-old were both injured during the attack.

Three killed in separate shootings in Abra

Three people have been killed in three separate shooting incidents in the Cordillera Administrative Region. The incidents were all reported from the province of Abra over the course of the weekend. According to reports, an elderly deaf man was found dead near his residence in Malita, Bangued, having been shot dead at close range. Another male was also shot dead near his house in Tayum town less than 24 hours later. On Sunday morning, a third shooting victim was reported in the town of Pidigan, where a third male victim was shot dead on his farm. The three incidents are not thought to be related as police investigations go forward.

Human rights defender injured in shooting

A human rights defender has been injured in what's thought to have been a targeted shooting in Lagawe, Ifugao. The incident occurred on Tuesday evening outside the victim's house. According to reports, the victim has been identified as 37-year-old Brandon Lee, a paralegal working for the Baguio-based Cordiller Human Rights Alliance and a volunteer for the anti-government Ifugao Peasant Movement. Lee was allegedly on a list of activists identified by the Filipino military as suspected supporters of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group. No arrests have been made thus far, while the victim remains in hospital.

Dengue epidemic declared in the Philippines

A dengue fever epidemic has been declared in the Philippines following a massive surge in the number of fatal cases reported. The national epidemic was declared after at least 622 people were killed by the mosquito-borne in the first seven months of this year alone. Overall, an estimated 146,000 cases have been recorded between January and July of 2019 - a 98 percent increase compared with the same period from 2018. The declaration will release emergency government funds and will also enable health officials to identify areas in need of a localised emergency response. One of the worst affected areas has been the Western Visayas region, where more than 23,000 cases have been recorded. Calabarzon, Northern Mindanao, and the Zamboanga Peninsula have also been severely affected, with seven regions exceeding epidemic level for three consecutive weeks. Symptoms include fever, a red rash, and pain behind the eyes.

Six suspected kidnappers detained in Metro Manila

Six suspected kidnappers have reportedly been arrested by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Metro Manila. The group are suspected of abducting and torturing a Chinese couple from Pampanga earlier this week. The arrests were made in Southkey Hun in the Alabang area of Muntinlupa city. The detainees have been identified as four Chinese nationals and two Filipino nationals. It's alleged that the Chinese victims were targeted because they supposedly revealed an illegal online gambling operation being run by a Chinese company in the Philippines. The male victim reportedly managed to escape his captors in Monday, before he was found by security. It's believed the man's pregnant wife was sent back to China after the suspects learnt that the Filipino authorities were looking for them.

Five killed in Basilan shooting

At least five people have been killed and three others have been wounded in a shooting incident in Basilan. According to recent reports, the shooting occurred on Tuesday morning in central Sumisip, where an armed group reportedly became embroiled in a violent clash. The village chief of Barangay Guiong, Sumisip, was among those killed in the altercation, which broke out between members of his civilian militia group and a group of unidentified armed suspects. It's believed the village chief had travelled to Barangay Central Sumisip with several militia members to settle an issue, but was reportedly met with gunfire.

Tropical Storm Wipha leaves five dead in northern Vietnam

At least five deaths have been confirmed while a further 13 others remain missing after Tropical Storm Wipha hit parts of northern coastal Vietnam. The worst hit area was the Thanh Hoa province, where three fatalities have been reported and 12 others remain unaccounted for. Another person was killed in the mountainous Bac Kan province, while a fifth person was killed in the province of Dien Bien. An estimated 400mm of rain hit the region over the weekend, with forecast predicting further rainfall could cause flash flooding and heighten the risk of landslides. Around 800 soldiers have been reployed to assist disaster relief efforts.

Tropical Storm Hannah to intensify into typhoon

Weather warnings have been issued in the Batanes province as tropical storm Hannah continued to intensify. Experts have warned that there is a high possibility of the storm developing into a typhoon as it continued to strengthen over the Philippine Sea. As of Monday morning, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) recorded maximum winds of 75 kph, with gusts of up to 90 kph. The weather system is first expected to intensify into a severe tropical storm then a typhoon as it approached the northernmost islands of the Philippines. The storm was last located approximately 940km east of Tuguegarao City, Cagayan, and is said to be moving in a north-north-westerly direction at a speed of 15 kph. Currently, the storm is unlikely to make landfall, but strong winds and rainfall may affect parts of the northern Batanes archipelago.

Three killed in Calabarzon shootings

At least three people have been killed in a series of shooting incidents reported in Calabarzon. According to reports, three people were shot dead in three separate shootings in the provinces of Batangas and Quezon, in the Calabarzon region. One male victim was shot dead on his motorbike in Barangay San Guillermo, Lipa City. Meanwhile, a second male victim was also shot dead by a known suspect outside his house in Barangay Danglayan, San Pascual town. A third male victim was reportedly riding home on a motorbike when a lone assailant shot him in Barangay Masalukot 1, Candelaria. The incidents are not thought to be related.

Dozens killed in Iloilo boating accidents

Dozens of people have been killed in a series of boating accidents in waters between Iloilo City and Guimaras Island. Three motorboats allegedly capsized over the weekend, resulting in the deaths of at 26 people. According to reports, at least five others remain missing, while 55 people were rescued by the emergency services. Motorboat trips between Iloilo and Guimaras have been suspended while investigations and search operations continue. It's believed the three motorboats were hit by a sudden strong gust of wind, knocking the boats over.

China warned over presence in South China Sea

The Filipino government has issued China with a warning over its presence in the disputed South China Sea. The Filipino Defence Ministry allegedly likened China's presence in the sea to squatting, warning that the Philippines was prepared to defend its claim in the region using all available means. The Filipino government claims that China has no legal basis for any claim to the mineral-rich area, which it identifies as the West Philippine Sea. China claims the entire South China Sea, a key shipping lane, and has built artificial islands with military-capable facilities over disputed reefs in the area claimed by the Philippines. The warning comes after more than 100 Chinese fishing boats were spotted near Pag-asa Island - claimed by the Philippines.

ASG militant killed in security operation

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has been killed during a security operation in the island province of Tawi-Tawi. The militant was allegedly apprehended by the Filipino security forces in the Batu-Batu village in the Panglima Sugala area on Monday. The security forces had reportedly launched a counter-terror operation in Tawi-Tawi following reports of militant activity in the area. The ASG are known to hijack vessels and kidnap crew in waters between Malaysia and the Filipino islands. A number of weapons and ammunition were also confiscated from the site.

Thousands flee amid clashes in Maguindanao and Cotabato

Thousands of people have reportedly fled their homes in the provinces of Cotabato and Maguindanao amidst violent clashes in the southern region. Fighting broke out in both areas due to a major security operation which has been launched by the Filipino security forces against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group, which has links with the Islamic State (IS). Operations in the provinces started last week and have now entered their sixth consecutive day. Recent reports claim that at least 1,691 families have been internally displaced due to the fighting, the worst of which has taken place in the Pikit area of Cotabato and the Shariff Saydona Mustapha area of Maguindanao.

Nine militants killed in Mindanao security operation

At least nine suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have been killed following a security operation in Mindanao. According to reports, the suspected militants were targeted over the course of several days last weekend. Nine suspected terrorists, thought to have links to the IS, have been confirmed dead, while three others were also injured during the two-day operation, which was carried out by the Filipino government security forces. It's alleged that the militants were loyal to a local IS leader known as Abu Turaife.

Dengue fever kills 16 in Cotabato

Recent reports indicate that the total death toll for dengue-related fatalities in Cotabato so far this year has reached 16. The local health authorities released a statement on Monday, in which it was said that at least 16 people have died after contracting dengue fever in Cotabato since the beginning of the year. The local government has now announced its intention to coordinate a planned response strategy to the outbreak, which is typically spread through mosquito bites. People have been advised to avoid areas with stagnant water and to take precautionary measures against being bitten.

Flood warning issued for Calabarzon

A flood warning has been issued for Calabarzon in the Philippines due to heavy rain. The Batangas, Cavite, and Laguna areas are thought to be among those facing the highest risk of flash floods, as severe wet weather makes its way towards the region this week. Rivers are likely to overflow and widespread travel disruption should be anticipated. Some remote, hard-to-reach areas are also at risk of being cut off in the event of widespread flooding.

Nine killed in Batanes earthquakes

At least nine people have been killed and dozens more have been injured after two earthquakes hit the Batanes province over the weekend. The earthquakes measured in at 6.0 and-magnitude on the Richter scale, hitting the archipelago in the early hours of Saturday morning. Both earthquakes epicentres were located several kilometres north of Itbayat, at a shallow depth, meaning tremors were widely felt. According to reports, around 60 people were also injured in the earthquakes, which caused houses to shake throughout much of the area. Some serious damage has been reported, with reports of people dying after their houses collapsed on top of them as they slept. No tsunami warning has been issued.

Man killed in Negros Oriental gun attack

A man has been killed and his wife has been wounded following a gun attack in Negros Oriental. The attack happened on Wednesday in Sitio Looc area of Barangay Poblacion in Guihulngan city. According to reports, the incident appears to have been a targeted attack, with the victim being ambushed by his attackers. The victim has been identified as a lawyer, sparking concern that his death may be linked to the deaths of two lawyers last year in similar attacks, both in Negros Oriental. Investigations have been launched; however, no suspects have been identified thus far.

Two suspected criminals killed in police shootout, Quezon

Two suspected criminals have allegedly been shot dead during a shootout with the police in Quezon. According to local reports, an armed altercation broke out between the suspects and police officers near Majaas Street in the early hours of Thursday morning, when the police apprehended the suspects. The suspects allegedly resisted arrest and instead opened fire on the police officers, sparking a fatal gunfight in which both suspects died. It's been reported that the pair were suspected robbers.

Dengue fever outbreak triggers state of emergency in Cavite

A state of emergency has been declared in Cavite province amidst an ongoing dengue fever outbreak. The governor of Cavite, Jonvic Remulla Junior, declared the state of emergency following an increase in the number of deaths linked to the disease. According to reports, at least 22 people have died from dengue fever in Cavite so far this year, while around 4,225 suspected and confirmed cases have been reported. Nine cities and towns in Cavite have been identified as hot spots of the mosquito-borne disease as health officials work to tackle the growing problem.

Two killed in Cebu drug raid

Two people have been killed and a third person has been injured following a drug raid in Mandaue city, Cebu. The raid was carried out by the Filipino security forces on Tuesday. A property on Zuellig Avenue was reportedly targeted in the raid. According to reports, a shootout broke out at the property between a number of suspected drug criminals and the police. The suspects resisted arrest and opened fire first, leading to a fatal gunfight, which left two suspects dead and one injured. Around one kilogram of narcotics were also recovered from the scene. Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has faced increased international criticism for his brutal 'war on drugs' campaign which has raised questions over extrajudicial killings allegedly carried out by the police during anti-narcotic operations.

Severe weather warning issued for parts of Central Luzon

A severe weather warning has been issued for the Bataan and Nueva Ecija areas of Central Luzon, where heavy rain and thunderstorms are expected to cause significant disruption. Heavy downpours are forecast to accompany thunder and lightning throughout the region according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration. There will be a heightened risk of flash floods in low-lying areas and along river beds, while there may also be a high risk of landslides in hilly terrain where there is loose soil. Travel disruption is likely and people have been advised to avoid unnecessary journeys.

Four police killed in armed clash

Four police officers have allegedly been killed in an armed clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) insurgents in Negros Oriental. According to reports, the clash occurred over the weekend in the Mabato area, where the police officers were ambushed by armed NPA insurgents in what's thought to have been a planned insurgent attack. The insurgents also stole a number of police firearms and motorbikes.

Nine killed in Cebu mini-truck accident

At least eight children and one adult have been killed and around 16 others have been wounded following a serious road accident involving a mini-truck in the Cebu province. The accident happened in the town of Boljoon on Friday morning. According to reports, the mini-truck had been transporting children when the driver lost control of the vehicle due to a brake failure near Upper Becerril. The vehicle reportedly veered off the road whilst going downhill and plunged off the side of a cliff into a deep ravine below. Rescue operations remain ongoing.

Foreign nationals freed from sex trafficking ring

A group of 10 foreign nationals have been freed from a sex trafficking ring in Laguna. The victims have all been identified as Chinese females who were rescued by local police officers as part of a joint rescue operation launched with the local social welfare authorities. No arrests have been made in connection with the release of the women, while investigations remain ongoing.

Two arrested after holding foreign national hostage in Pasay City

Two Chinese nationals have been arrested by the Filipino police for holding a Taiwanese national hostage in Pasay City. The pair had allegedly kept the victim against their will in a hotel room at the Saiyan Travellers Inn on Domestic Road. According to local reports, the police responded to calls of a hostage situation at the hotel on Thursday and arrested both suspects at the scene. The victim was allegedly held in the hotel room for more than five hours. The motive behind the incident remains unclear as investigations go forward.

Tropical Storm Falcon leaves two dead in Cagayan

Two people have been killed after Tropical Storm Falcon hit Cagayan in northern Luzon. Both reportedly died after drowning in separate incidents. Heavy rainfall brought in by the storm caused localised sudden flash flooding, leading to the deaths on Thursday. Further adverse weather is forecast to continue to affect the area over the next 24 hours as the storm gradually moves in a northerly direction away from the northern-most tip of Luzon. Some damage has been reported, affecting town infrastructure, buildings, and vehicles.

Two soldiers killed in NPA clash in North Cotabato

Two Filipino soldiers have been killed in an armed clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) insurgents in North Cotabato. According to reports, the clash occurred on Wednesday in the Arakan area, where the security forces had been carrying out a counter-insurgency operation when they encountered a number of armed NPA insurgents, leading to a fatal crossfire in which two soldiers were shot dead before the insurgents managed to escape.

Local ASG sub-leader killed in Basilan

A local Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) sub-leader has reportedly been killed during a security operation in Basilan. The militant has been identified as Arod Wahing - sub-leader to ASG leader Radulan Sahiron. It's believed both Wahing and Sahiron are both linked to the kidnapping of a German couple and a Swiss wildlife photographer in the Sulu area of the Philippines. According to reports, Wahing was shot dead by Fillipino security forces during a military campaign in the village of Parian-Baunoh in Basilan's Lantawan town. Two other suspected ASG militants have also been arrested.

One killed in ASG attack in Basilan

A member of the Filipino security forces has reportedly been killed, while at least four civilians have been wounded in an Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) attack in Basilan. The attack occurred in the Sumisip area, where the ASG militants attacked a security outpost manned by the Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit. According to reports, two children are thought to be among those wounded.

Heath alert issued over dengue fever

A national health alert has been issued by the Filipino government health authorities over dengue fever. The national alert was declared on Monday following a significant increase in the number of dengue fever cases reported across the country. Overall, at least 456 fatal cases have been recorded in the first six months of 2019. According to reports, the latest figures is a 39 percent increase from the 278 deaths recorded during the same period of the previous year. A total of 106,630 cases of dengue have been recorded nationwide so far this year - an 85 percent increase on 57,564 cases recorded in the first half of 2018.

President threatens martial law amid risk of coup

President Rodrigo Duterte has allegedly threatened to declare martial law amid rumours of a coup being organised against his presidency. The president claims to have been informed by a reliable source of plans for a military coup aiming to remove him from power. In response to the rumours, Duterte has threatened to impose martial law to ensure stability and minimise the risk of the armed forces turning against him. According to reports, the alleged coup is said to be fuelled by government corruption, Duterte's brutal war on drugs, and the continued issue of terrorism in southern Philippines.

Four killed in Cotabato shooting

Four deaths have been reported following a shooting incident in Cotabato city, Maguindanao. The shooting allegedly occurred on Wednesday on Notre Dame Avenue in Cotabato, where a local village chair persona and his wife were shot dead alongside two of their friends. Local reports suggest the killing may have been motivated by a personal dispute of family feud, although police investigations into the murders remain ongoing and no official motive has been determined thus far.

Five injured as bus falls off bridge in Pampanga

Five people have been injured after a passenger bus fell off a bridge in the Pampanga province. The accident occurred on Thursday morning along the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) in the San Fernando area of Pampanga. According to reports, heavy traffic along the NLEX has been reported as a result of the accident, which occurred around two kilometres away from the San Fernando northbound exit, causing long delays as a three-kilometre-long line of traffic built up. A number of other vehicles are also thought to have been involved in the incident, including two trucks and four cars. It remains unclear precisely what caused the accident as investigations go forward.

Volcano warning issued for Mount Mayon, Albay

A warning has been issued for the Mount Mayon volcano located in the Albay province. The level two warning has been issued by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology following a period of increased volcanic and seismic activity near the volcano. The emergency services and disaster response units have been advised to be ready on standby should an eruption occur - which experts have warned could happen due to an increase in the amount of magma building up in the magma chamber.

Hundreds affected by food poisoning at event hosted by former First Lady

Hundreds of guests at an event hosted by former First Lady Imelda Marcos have been affected by food poisoning at a celebration in Manila. Approximately 2,500 people attended the lunch event on Tuesday, held to celebrate Imelda Marcos' 90th birthday. According to reports, health officials stated that 261 people have fallen ill from food poisoning, with many rushed to hospital. An investigation into the cause of the food poisoning has been launched, with preliminary reports indicating the incident was most likely an accident and not an act of sabotage. Imelda Marcos - widow of former dictator president Ferdinand Marco - was sentenced to an 11-year prison term on seven corruption charges last year, but has not yet been incarcerated and is currently out on bail pending an appeal. 

Flood warnings issued in southern Philippines

Flood warnings have reportedly been issued to at least six provinces in the southern region of the Philippines. According to reports, local weather experts issued the warning on Wednesday due to a band of low-pressure threatening to bring heavy rainfall to parts of Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental, North Cotabato, Sarangani, South Cotabato, and Sultan Kudarat. There will be a high risk of flash flooding in low-lying areas, along with a heightened risk of landslides in mountainous areas.

IS claims deadly Jolo bombing

At least five people have been killed in a bomb attack on Jolo island. Three of the victims were Filippino soldiers, while nine others were wounded in the blast. Islamic State (IS) said two of its militants carried out the attack using suicide vests. “This attack is meant to disrupt the intensified security operations and our operational tempo following (a) series of recent operational gains in the area,” said army spokesman Colonel Ramon Zagala.

Four bodies recovered after Tg Bungah landslide

Four bodies have been recovered following a landslide in Tg Bungah on the northern coast of Penang Island. Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail has expressed shock and sadness over the tragedy, which occurred on Tuesday. The victims were Myanmese workers who were hired to build a retaining wall at the Lost Paradise Resort hotel in the town.

Two NPA militants killed in Negros Oriental

Two suspected militants of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group have allegedly been killed in an armed encounter in Negros Oriental. The Filipino security forces were reportedly attacked by NPA militants whilst manning a military post near the Talalak area of Santa Catalina on Friday. The security forces came under fire, prompting a firefight in which two NPA militants were shot dead. No other casualties have been reported.

Town councillor killed in Sindangan shooting

A local town councillor has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte. The attack occurred in the Barangay Piao area on Wednesday, when the councillor was driving 10 local students to a nearby school and was shot dead by unidentified assailants. No other casualties have been reported from the incident. The police have launched an investigation; however, no motive and no suspects have been identified thus far.

Ten fishermen kidnapped off Tawi Tawi Island

Ten fishermen have reportedly been kidnapped off the coast of Tawi Tawi Island near Sulu. The fishermen were allegedly working as part of a crew of 16 manning two boats and were en route to Semporna in Malaysia when they were hijacked by armed gunmen. It's believed the victims - thought to be Filipino nationals - were fishing without a permit during curfew hours in the early hours of Tuesday morning. According to reports, the fishermen have been abducted by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants, and have most likely been taken to the Sitangkai island, south of Tawi Tawi. Six of the fishermen were rescued by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency and claimed they were heading to Semporna to renew their permits.

Former Bayan Muna official killed in Naga City

A former official of the left-wing Bayan Muna political party has reportedly been killed in Naga City in the Camarines Sur province. According to reports, the victim has been identified as 40-year-old Neptali Morada - a former regional head and spokesperson for the party. Morada was allegedly on his way to work at the Camarines Sur Hall in Pili, when unidentified gunmen opened fire on him in San Isideo village on Monday morning. The police have launched an investigation the killing, which comes just two days after two human rights group workers were killed in Sorsogon City.

Truck crashes into houses in Davao City

At least nine people have been killed and eight others have been wounded after a truck crashed into a number of houses in Davao City, Davao del Sur. The accident occurred on Tuesday along the Diversion Road in the Matina Pangi area of the city. According to reports, the truck's brakes failed and the driver subsequently lost control of the truck as it crashed into several houses and hit four parked vehicles which were parked along the road. 

Thirteen killed in rubbish truck accident

At least 13 people have been killed in an accident involving a rubbish truck in Camarines Sur. The rubbish truck reportedly overturned on a mountain road in the Tagpocol area over the weekend, leaving 13 people killed and injuring a further 41 others. The police have launched an investigation into the accident, with preliminary reports suggesting the driver of the truck may have been responsible. The truck had been transporting wedding guests at the time of the accident.

UN demands investigation into human rights abuses

The United Nations (UN) are calling for an investigation into alleged human rights abuses and violations by the Filipino government. The UN's Human Rights Council has accused the Filipino government of declining standards in human rights and has demanded that investigations be launched into 33 cases of human rights abuse recorded within the last three years, including extrajudicial killings by the police as part of President Duterte's brutal war on drugs.

Two killed in Quezon shooting

Two people have been killed and three children have been wounded in a shooting incident in Quezon city. According to local reports, an unidentified armed assailant entered a family home in the Barangay Payatas area on Tuesday night and shot dead both parents before fleeing the scene, leaving three children injured. The police have launched a murder investigation which remains ongoing. It's unclear if the incident was an attempted burglary gone wrong or if the suspect knew the victims personally.

Three drug suspects killed in police shootouts

Three suspected drug criminals have been confirmed dead following a series of shootouts with the Filipino police fores in Luzon. Three separate altercations occurred in the Batangas, Laguna, and Nueva Ecija areas on Tuesday, leaving three drug suspects dead.

Two soldiers wounded in Cotabato gun attack

Two Filipino soldiers have been wounded after they were targeted by gunmen in an armed attack in Cotabato city. Both soldiers were reportedly off duty when they were shot at just after midday on Saturday. The pair were ambushed whilst riding a motorbike down Sinsuat Avenue. The attackers remain unidentified as they managed to flee immediately after the attack; however, the authorities suspect they were separatist militants.

Three killed in Abra stabbing and shooting

Three people have been killed following a stabbing and shooting incident in the Abra province. According to recent reports, the incident occurred near a river in the Pangolposan area of Tubo on Friday. No suspects have been arrested as the police launch a murder investigation. All three fatalities have been identified as fishermen, or more specifically, eel gatherers. It's possible a dispute over local business may have motivated the attack.

Dutch hostage killed in Sulu gunfight

A Dutch hostage has been killed in a gunfight in the Sulu province. The victim, Ewold Horn was being held by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the town of Patikul, but was shot dead by ASG militants when he tried to escape during a gunfight between the ASG and the Filipino military in the jungles of Patikul on Friday. At least six militants were killed and 12 others were wounded in the two-hour gunfight. Eight soldiers were also wounded. According to reports, Horn had originally been kidnapped in 2012 along with two others during a bird watching trip in the Tawi Tawi province. The two others he was abducted with managed to escape separately in 2012 and 2018. The security forces had been conducting a rescue operation to retrieve Horn when he died.

Eleven wounded in NPA attack

At least 11 people have been wounded in a militant attack in Northern Mindanao. The attack was reportedly carried out by members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant rebel group. According to local reports, eight security personnel have been injured along with three NPA militants. The militants allegedly ambushed a military convoy which had been passing through the village of Hagpa in Bukidnon when a roadside explosive was triggered, and militants attacked the convoy, leading to a 40-minute gunfight.

Villager councillor killed in Oriental Mindoro shooting

A village councillor has been shot dead in Mahal Na Pangalan in Oriental Mindoro. According to reports, the victim was targeted on Tuesday evening, when he was shot several times by an unidentified gunman. The police have launched a manhunt for the perpetrator, establishing road checkpoints throughout the area. The motive behind the attack has yet to be determined, although unconfirmed reports have speculated the murder may have been politically-motivated.

Five killed in Bulacan shooting

At least five people have been killed following a shooting incident in Bulacan. The incident occurred on Thursday in the San Pedro area of San Jose del Monte city, where the police were called to respond to reports of gunfire. The bodies of five victims were found by the police, along with around 20 bullet cases. One of the victims was found in possession of seven packets of crystal methamphetamine, leading the police to believe a drug deal had gone wrong.

Police officer killed in Cebu shooting

A Filipino police officer has been killed following a shooting incident in Cebu. The shooting occurred in the Mabolo area on Tuesday. According to reports, the officer was on his way to Lahug from a court hearing when an unidentified gunman opened fire on him and shot him dead. An investigation has been launched, alongside search operations; however, no arrests have been made thus far.

Six killed in jeep crash

At least six people have been killed after a jeep crashed into a ravine in the Albay province. The accident happened in the Sito Hulandig area of San Jose village in Libon, where a jeep transporting some 30 passengers lost control and veered off the road into a deep ravine. Six fatalities have been confirmed and around 18 others have been injured.

One killed in Pangasinan shooting

A man has been killed in a shooting incident in the Pangasinan province. According to reports, a lawyer was shot dead by two unidentified suspects on Friday morning. The shooting took place in front of the Dagupan City Justice Hall. Both suspects fled the scene immediately after the shooting, prompting search operations led by the police as murder investigations are launched. No possible motive has been determined thus far.

One killed in Zamboanga del Sur shootout

A person has been killed and another has been wounded following a shootout in Zamboanga del Sur. The clash occurred in the Tubod area over the weekend, when a vehicular convoy transporting Filipino security forces was attacked by gunmen. One attacker was shot dead in retaliatory fire from the security forces, while another was wounded and six others were arrested.

Mid-term elections underway

Mid-term elections are underway in the Philippines as voters head to the polls in what is widely seen as a popularity test for President Rodrigo Duterte following his first three years in office. Duterte currently doesn't hold the majority in the Senate - the upper house of Parliament - but recent opinion polls indicate this could change. If Duterte manages to secure a majority in the Senate, it will enable him to push for constitutional change and restore the death penalty.

Three killed in Metro Manila shooting

At least three people have been killed in a shooting incident in Metro Manila. The shooting reportedly occurred in the visitor's area of the National Centre for Mental Health in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila. According to reports, the suspect shot his wife and grandson before turning the gun on himself in what's being treated as murder-suicide. The motive behind the incident remains unclear as investigations go forward; however, questions have been raised over the suspect's state of mental health.

Fourteen killed in election-related violence

At least 14 deaths have been recorded across the country amid election-related violence. According to local reports, the police confirmed the 14 fatalities, along with at least 31 violent incidents related to the upcoming mid-term elections, due to be held on Monday 13 May. Political and social tensions are expected to remain high over the weekend, with a high risk of further violence breaking out.

NPA rebels kill two paramilitary personnel in Locotan

Suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels have reportedly killed two members of the Revolutionary Proletarian Army-Alex Bongcayao Brigade in Locotan, Negros Occidental. According to reports, the NPA rebels attacked a property in Locotan on Thursday morning, killing two paramilitary security personnel and wounding three others.

Two drug suspects killed in Laguna police operations

Two suspected drug dealers have been killed during police operations in Laguna. Both suspects were killed in gunfights after two separate sting operations turned violent. One suspect was killed after opening fire on the police in Santa Cruz on Wednesday, while another was killed in similar circumstances in the San Pedro area the following day.

One killed in Ilocos shooting

A person has been killed in a shooting incident in the Ilocos region. The shooting occurred over the weekend outside a shrine near the National Highway in the San Juan area, where the victim was riding her motorbike when she was shot dead late on Saturday night. The police have launched a murder investigation; however, no suspects have been identified thus far and the motive behind the killing remains unclear.

Two killed in Negros ambush

Two people have been killed following an armed ambush in Negros Occidental. The attack happened on Thursday in the village of Inolingan in Moises Padilla. Local reports have confirmed that Councillor Michael Garcia and his father, former councillor Mark Garcia, where both killed by unidentified armed assailants, who targeted the victims' campaign convoy. Mark Garcia is the brother of Vice Mayor Ella Celestina Garcia-Yulo - who was also involved in the attack but was not wounded. She is said to be running for the position of mayor against her uncle, former mayor Magdaleno Pena, whom she claimed was responsible for the attack.

IED found outside church in Sultan Kudarat

An improvised explosive device (IED) has been found outside a church in Sultan Kudarat. The IED was discovered by local residents inside a bag which had been left unattended outside the entrance to a chapel in the Purok Rosal area near Tacurong City on Monday morning. It's believed the church was targeted in an attempted bomb attack. No claim of responsibility has been made for the foiled attack, which came just a day after 321 people were killed in a series of eight suicide bomb attacks targeting three churches and three hotels in Sri Lanka.

Earthquake kills 11 in Luzon

A 6.1-magnitude earthquake has hit Luzon in the Philippines, killing at least 11 people. The earthquake struck at around 09:11 GMT (17:11 local time) on Monday. According to the BBC, the airport was seriously damaged and at least two buildings were also destroyed. It's feared dozens may still be trapped under a collapsed building in the Pampanga province. A second earthquake measuring at 6.4-magnitude also struck the central Visayas region on Tuesday, just south of Luzon. It remains unclear if any casualties have been reported from the second quake. The worst-hit areas have been identified as Tacloban City, Leyte, and Catbalogan City in Samar. 

Three killed in Leyte shooting

A fatal shooting incident has been reported in the Leyte province, where a gunman opened fire on a group of prisoners as they were being escorted through a village from a court hearing at the Palompon Sub-Provincial Jail. The attack occurred in the Villaba area on Tuesday. According to reports, the gunman managed to flee on a motorbike immediately after the attack. No prisoners were injured of escaped; however, a civilian bystander and two prison guards were reportedly killed in the attack.

Easter holiday travel warning

A travel warning has been issued for the Easter Holiday in the Philippines, where Holy Week is considered a major religious festival, celebrated by Catholic Christians. There is likely to be an increased volume of traffic through most major urban areas due to people travelling to visit family. The Filipino security forces have also been prepared to heighten security levels during this time.

Dentist killed in Samar shooting

A female dentist has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in the Samar region. According to reports, the victim, 69-year-old Vicky Romhur, was driving home when she was shot dead by an unidentified gunman in Barangay Rawis near Calbayog City on Monday. The police have not identified any suspects thus far, but are currently investigating whether or not the killing could be related to the unresolved murder of the victim's sister, Catherine Romhur Johnson, who was shot dead last year in a bakery.

Dozens injured in three-vehicle collision

Dozens of people have been injured following a three-vehicle collision in Isabela. The accident happened on Sunday in the Naganacan area of Isabela, where an SUV-type car crashed into a small tractor (known locally as a 'kuliglig') which overturned into the left-hand lane, where an approaching passenger bus collided with it. The bus overturned as a result, dragging the kuliglig with it. According to reports, at least 32 people have been injured in the accident, which was allegedly caused by the SUV vehicle's speeding.

NPA rebels clash with security forces in Misamis Occidental

Fighting has been reported between suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants and the Filipino security forces in Misamis Occidental. At least eight soldiers were injured during the scuffle, which took place in Nueve Vista village near Don Victoriano. A number of NPA militants may have also been wounded in the clash, although no figure has been confirmed as the militants fled the scene shortly after the altercation.

ASG militant killed in Sulu clash

A suspected militant of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has reportedly been killed in an armed clash with the Filipino security forces in the Sulu province. The clash occurred in the Panglayahan village near Patikul town, where a Filipino soldiers allegedly encountered a number of ASG militants during operations on Thursday. A 40-minute gunfight broke out, in which one militant was killed and two soldiers were wounded.

Four drug suspects detained in Metro Manila

At least four suspected drug dealers have been detained in recent anti-narcotics operations in Metro Manila. The arrests took place in Navotas City, where two suspects were arrested in the North Bay Boulevard area and another two were detained in an undisclosed location on Sunday. One of the suspects arrested is alleged to be a prominent local dealer. Approximately eight sachets of crystal methamphetamine were also seized from the suspects, along with one firearm.

Malaysian hostage escapes ASG in Sulu

A Malaysian national has reportedly escaped from captivity under the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu province. The hostage was allegedly found injured some 10 metres or so from a known ASG route in Simisa, Sulu on Thursday. It's claimed the hostage managed to escape during a firefight between the militants and the Filipino security forces. The victim has been airlifted to hospital for treatment. Two other Indonesian nationals were kidnapped with him off Pegasus Reef, Borneo, in December 2018.

Seven killed as military clash with ASG in Sulu

At least seven people have been killed in recent clashes between Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants and the Filipino security forces in the Sulu province. According to recent reports, at least four ASG militants and three government troops have been killed, while an estimated nine militants have been wounded, along with at least 13 security personnel. The fighting took place in the Latih area of Sulu on Friday morning, following a suspected ASG attack targeted school teachers in the Patikul.

Explosion reported in Sultan Kudarat

An explosion has been reported in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat, where it's feared as many as 18 people have been injured. According to Rappler, the blast occurred on Wednesday inside Carlito's Chicken restaurant along the National Highway in Barangay Kalawag 2. Among the 18 casualties are six minors and a pregnant woman. Preliminary investigations suggest the blast came from an improvised explosive device (IED) - making the incident the third bombing in Isulan within the past eight months. No claim of responsibility has been made thus far.

ASG militants injure two police officers in Sulu

Two Filipino police officers have reportedly been wounded in a militant attack by suspected members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the southern Sulu province. The officers were allegedly attacked on Tuesday morning in the town of Patikul. At the time of the attack, the police officers were escorting a number of teachers from Jolo to Taung. Some 15 suspected ASG militants were involved in the attack - outnumbering the police officers.

Police operations kill 14 in Negros Oriental

At least 14 suspected militants have allegedly been killed and a police officer has been injured in recent police operations carried out in the Negros Oriental region. The operations were conducted over the weekend in the Canlaon, Manjuyod and Santa Catalina areas. Those targeted were local residents or farmers suspected of being affiliated with, or members of, the New People's Army (NPA) militant group.

Two IS militants arrested in Cagayan

Two Islamic State (IS) militants have been arrested in the northern Cagayan province. The two suspects were detained in the town of Baggao by the Filipino security forces. Various weapons and explosives were also discovered and seized from the scene. According to reports, the police have stated that the militants were identified as Altero Bello and Greg Bello - members of an IS-aligned jihadist group called Syuful Khilafa Fi Luzon. The group was established in 2016 but has no record of violent attacks in the northern region.

Police officer killed in Bauko clash

A Filipino police officer has reportedly been killed, a while a second has been injured following a clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in the Bauko municipality of the Mountain province. According to local reports, a gunfight broke out on Friday morning between NPA militants and local police forces during a routine patrol at Mt Kapuwaw in the Bagnen Proper area of Bauko.

Prominent journalist arrested again

A prominent Filipino journalist has been arrested again following a previous earlier this year. Maria Ressa, founder of news site Rappler, was initially arrested last month over an alleged internet libel case; however, she was detained again this week for allegedly violating laws barring foreign ownership of media. Ressa has been granted bail after paying 90,000 Filipino pesos (around £1,300; $1,700). Many have criticised her arrests as being politically motivated due to Rappler's open criticism of the government. Since the start of the year, 11 legal cases have been filed against the news site.

Two NPA militants killed in Anitapan

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants have been killed and a third militant has been arrested following a security operation in the Anitapan area of Compostela Valley. The operation was led by the Filipino military in response to reports of NPA militants active in the area. At least one Filipino soldier was also wounded in a brief firefight with the militants.

Four killed in Negros Occidental bus accident

At least four people have been killed and eight others have been wounded in a traffic accident involving a passenger bus in Negors Occidental. The accident occurred in the Igmayaan area on Monday. According to reports, the driver of the bus lost control of the vehicle whilst turning a corner, causing the bus to veer off the side of the road, falling into a deep ravine below. It's possible the bus was travelling at an excessive speed at the time of the accident.

Local NPA leader killed in Ilo-Ilo raid

A local New People's Army (NPA) leader has reportedly been killed during a recent raid in the Alimodias area of Iloilo. The Filipino security forces allegedly carried out a raid on Sunday, targeting a suspected NPA hideout in Alimodias. The suspected NPA militants allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the security forces, sparking a brief firefight in which a suspected NPA leader was killed.

Three ASG killed in Sulu crossfire

Three suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in a recent crossfire with the Filipino government forces in the Sulu province. According to reports, the security forces came across a number of armed militants near the Banguingui area during a search operation over the weekend. A brief firefight broke out in which three militants were confirmed dead shortly after.

NPA militant killed in security operations

A militant from the New People's Army (NPA) has been killed during a security operation conducted by the Filipino military in Surigao del Norte. According to local reports, the security forces had received intel regarding militant activity in the region, prompting a search operation in the Anomar area, where they encountered at least one armed militant in a suspected hideout.

Two ASG militants killed in Sulu

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly been killed in a recent crossfire with the security forces in Sulu. According to reports, the Filipino security forces encountered a number of armed ASG militants in the Upper Binuang village near Talipao town during a security operation on Tuesday. Two militants were killed in the shootout, while a number of firearms and other weapons were confiscated from the site of the clash.

Four drug suspects killed in police shootout

Four suspected drug criminals have been killed a in a shootout with the police in the Santa Teresa area of Negros Occidental. According to reports, a number of undercover police officers were carrying out a sting operation, attempting to arrest the suspects during a drug transaction; however, the suspects allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire, sparking a fatal shootout.

Tropical depression sparks evacuations in Davao

Hundreds of people have been made to evacuate from their homes as Tropical Depression Chedeng threatens to bring destructive weather to the Davao region. Recent reports indicate the storm has made landfall in Don Marcelino of Davao Occidental, heightening the risk of landslides and flash flooding as heavy rain and strong winds hit the area. Approximately 471 families have been evacuated, while all schools in the area have also been closed amid the disruption.

Tropical cyclone warning issued in Davao

A tropical cyclone warning has been issued in the Davao region as Tropical Depression Chedeng makes its way towards the Philippines. According to reports, the weather system is due to make landfall on Tuesday in Davao, bringing adverse weather conditions to the surrounding area. Heavy rain and strong winds should be expected and local residents have been advised to prepare for potential property damage and general disruption.

Philippines leaves International Criminal Court

The Philippines has officially left the International Criminal Court (ICC), withdrawing from the institution over an ongoing probe led by the ICC into President Rodrigo Duterte's drug war. Duterte announced the country's intentions to leave the ICC in 2018, but withdrawal could only take place 12 months after the announcement in accordance with ICC rules. The withdrawal makes the Philippines the second country to leave the ICC, in what's believed to be an attempt to evade investigation into the president's controversial war on drugs, which has been accused of encouraging extrajudicial killings by the police and security forces.

Eight killed in Lanao del Sur clash

Eight people have been killed in a clash between the Filipino security forces and Islamist Maute group militants in Lanao del Sur. According to reports, the clash took place in Tubaran over the weekend. Four militants and four Filipino soldiers were killed in the altercation, while two other soldiers were also wounded.

Gang member shot dead by police in Manila

A suspected gang member has been shot dead by police in the capital, Manila. The Manila Police District (MPD) said Adonis Caputalan, a member of the Joshua Bahar Group, was killed in an exchange in Tondo on Monday. Two pistols, a grenade and police uniforms were recovered from the scene.

ASG militant arrested in Zamboanga del Sur

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been arrested in the Kansanyangan area of Zamboanga del Sur. The suspect was detained on Friday during an arrest operation led by the Filipino security forces. According to reports, the suspect faces multiple charges related to murder and is also thought to have been involved in 2015 bombings which targeted Zamboanga city's main bus terminal. Various weapons and explosive devices were found in the suspects home, leading the police to suspect they may have been planning a suicide bombing.

Four killed in Quezon shooting

At least four people have been killed and two others have been wounded following a shooting incident in Quezon. The incident occurred in the Infanta area of the province, where an unidentified gunman opened fire on a number of victims before fleeing on a motorbike. At least one other suspect was involved in the attack. A police investigation has been launched to determine the motive and identify the suspects.

Ten NPA rebels surrender to security forces

Ten members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have surrendered to the Filipino security forces in the Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao provinces. According to reports, the Filipino military encountered a number of NPA rebels in a remote area along the border of Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao on Tuesday. It's said that the militants gave up their weapons and handed themselves over during a military operation.

Police kill eight drug suspects in Bulacan

At least eight suspected drug criminals have apparently been killed during police operations in Bulacan. The suspects were targeted in separate anti-narcotics operations over the weekend in the Baliuag, Santa Maria, San Jose Del Monte, and San Rafael areas. According to reports, the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, sparking fatal gunfights.

NPA rebels surrender in Negros Occidental

A group of around 25 New People's Army (NPA) rebels have reportedly surrendered to the police in Negros Occidental. The NPA rebels gave up their weapons and are due to partake in a government-led rehabilitation programme designed to assist former rebels with integrating into civilian life, including financial, medical, educational, and legal support. The surrender came about as a result of recent peace talks with the local government in the Sagay area.

Soldier killed in Maguindanao attack

A Filipino soldier has reportedly been killed in a gun attack in Maguindanao. The soldier was allegedly off-duty when he was targeted by gunmen in the Datu Odin Sinsuat area on Sunday. The incident is the latest in a recent series of similar killings in the Mindanao and Cotabato city region. According to local reports, at least four soldiers have been killed in violent incidents in the last week alone. It's though the attacks are a response from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group to the government's ongoing counter-terror operations against Islamist extremism in the region.

Militants attack security forces in Bangsamoro

At least three Filipino soldiers have been killed and two others have been wounded after militants from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) attacked the Filipino security forces in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region on Thursday. According to local reports, two separate attacks were carried out by suspected BIFF militants in Cotabato city, where a soldier was shot dead, and in Sambulawan, Maguindanao, where two more soldiers were killed and two others were wounded in a claimed attack. One of those wounded has been identified as a civilian bystander.

Two ASG killed in security operations

Two suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly been killed in recent security operations in the Philippines. One ASG militant was killed in the Sulu province, where the Filipino security forces clashed with a group of armed militants near Simisa in the Banguinui Tongkil area. Another militant was also killed while a member of the paramilitary forces was wounded in a clash in the village of Masola in Isabela city in Basilan.

One killed in Manila stabbing

A person has been killed and two others have been wounded following a stabbing incident in Manila. The incident occurred on Tuesday in the Police Community Precinct 8 of Makati City of Metro Manila. According to reports, an armed assailant wounded two victims with a knife before being shot dead by police officers who arrived on the scene after responding to the incident.

Man kidnapped by gunmen in Cabanatuan

A man has reportedly been kidnapped and taken hostage by unidentified gunmen in Cabanatuan city, Nueva Ecija. The abduction allegedly took place over the weekend, when a number of armed men in a vehicle forced the victim to stop before taking them hostage at gunpoint and fleeing the scene. A police investigation has been launched; however, no suspects have been identified, the motive behind the kidnapping remains unclear, and no ransom demands have been made.

Government rejects ASG ransom demands

The Filipino government has reportedly rejected ransom demands from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The militant group has threatened to behead Indonesian and Malaysian hostages if no ransoms are paid; however, the Filipino government refuses to break from its form policy of not paying ransoms. Operations to safely retrieve the foreign hostages remain ongoing, with military personnel deployed to Sulu, where the ASG is largely based.

Five killed in Itogon wildfire

At least five fatalities have been confirmed following a wildfire in the Itogon area of the Benguet province. The blaze reportedly broke out on Wednesday afternoon near Ampucao, destroying some six hectares of forested land. The fire was ultimately extinguished after fire services tackled the blaze for five hours. Power in the surrounding areas may have been affected by the fire - the cause of which still remains unclear as investigations go forward.

Supreme Court upholds extension of martial law in Mindanao

The Filipino Supreme Court has voted to uphold the third extension of martial law in the southern Mindanao region. The extension will mean martial law will remain in force in the region until 31 December 2019. Lawmakers submitted four petitions challenging the most recent extension, claiming there was no reason for the continuation of martial law and that it was being used to suppress democratic rights ahead of elections in May. Martial law was first enforced in May 2017 amidst violent fighting between government troops and Islamist militants during the siege on Marawi city.

Tribal groups oppose Kaliwa dam project

Tribal groups in the mountainous northern region of the Philippines have been protesting against a new dam project along the Kaliwa river in the Sierra Madre mountains in Tanay Rizal. According to Al Jazeera, tribal elders of the Dumagat people are opposed to the government-funded Kaliwa dam project because it allegedly threatens to flood sacred grounds. The Dumagat also claim the project will ruin their homes and destroy their way of life.

Dozens detained in Quezon city anti-drug operations

Dozens of suspected drug criminals have been detained by the authorities following recent anti-drug operations carried out in Quezon city over the weekend. Some 48 drug suspects have been arrested in numerous operations, including buy-bust sting operations, while two suspects were arrested following tip-offs regarding illicit drug activity in the area. The operations were part of an ongoing campaign against illegal drugs as mid-term elections draw close.

NPA release six civilian militia hostages

At least six civilian militia members hostages have allegedly been released by the New People's Army (NPA) rebel forces after they were abducted in Agusan del Sur almost two months ago. Local reports indicate the six hostages were members of the Civilian Armed Auxiliary (CAA), which supports the Filipino government forces. It's believed at least seven more CAA members remain in captivity, along with two Filipino soldiers. The hostages were reportedly released by a third party following mounting pressure on the NPA from ongoing military operations.

British backpacker raped by taxi driver in Palawan

A 21-year-old British backpacker has allegedly been raped by a Filipino taxi driver in Palawan. According to reports, the woman was travelling in the Philippines alone, but that night had met with other travellers friends and got in a taxi shared with two others back to her hotel when the attack occurred. The taxi driver had allegedly offered to escort her to her room while the other two, destined for a different hostel, waited in the taxi. A suspect has been arrested and remains in custody.

Journalist released on bail

Prominent journalist and CEO of Rappler news website Maria Ressa has been released on bail after being arrested by the Filipino authorities yesterday. Ressa was detained on charges of 'cyber-libel' over an article from 2012. The arrest has been internationally criticised, with Amnesty International condemning the detention as being politically motivated. The charges Ressa faces carry a potential sentence of 12-years in prison. According to the BBC, bail was set at 100,000 pesos (approximately £1,470; $1,900).

Chinese national arrested for sexually harassing teenage girls

A 19-year-old Chinese national has been arrested on charges of sexual harassment in Pasay city. Zhang Yang - an employee of an online casino operating in the Philippines - allegedly assaulted three 18-year-old female students inside a horror house attraction at the Star City amusement park last week. The girls have accused Zhang of groping them, and an investigation has upheld the claims. According to reports, five of the police officers involved in the case have also been fired after it was claimed they had tried to pressure the victims into settling with the suspect for a sum of money in exchange for dropping the case against him.

Filipino journalist wanted for arrest

A prominent Filipino journalist, Maria Ressa, has been served an arrest warrant on charges of libel. Ressa is the chief executive if the Rappler news site and has been an outspoken critic of President Rodrigo Duterte. According to reports, the charges of 'cyber libel' refer to an article Ressa wrote and published back in 2012. Amnesty International has criticised the arrest warrant as an 'absurd legal attack', claiming the case against her is politically motivated and designed to silence independent media.

Seventy killed amid measles outbreak

At least 70 fatalities have been confirmed as a result of a measles outbreak in the Philippines. According to recent reports, mainly children have been among those killed within the past month - during which time, some 4,300 cases were reported. The outbreak has largely affected the Metro Manila area, where 55 children under the age of four have died from measles this year. A red alert has been declared in parts of the Luzon and Visayas regions. The outbreak has been blamed on a recent backlash against vaccinations.

Three children die in house fire

Three young children have died after getting caught in a deadly house fire in Davao Oriental over the weekend. The children were siblings from the same family and were allegedly asleep when the fire broke out in a residential property in the Mati area. According to reports, the three children had been left at a neighbour's house and their grandmother slept in another house with two more grandchildren whilst their mother was at work. Although the grandmother managed to save the two children who were with her, thick smoke hindered rescue efforts to retrieve the other three. The fire spread quickly and destroyed at least 25 houses, affecting 135 people in total. The cause of the fire still remains unclear.

Maguindanao commander arrested for murder

A senior commander of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in Maguindanao has been arrested on charges of murder and arson. Hamsa Abdullah Pandita was arrested in the town of Montawal and will faces charges linked to multiple murders. Pandita had allegedly been evading the authorities by travelling to-and-fro across the border between the Maguindanao province and the North Cotabato province. The MILF have played a large role in cooperating with the Filipino government over the recent autonomy referendum and assisting government forces with counter-terror operations.

ASG militant killed in Sulu clash

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been killed in a clash with the Filipino security forces in the Sulu province. Two other suspected ASG militants were also wounded, along with one Filipino soldier. The brief firefight took place in the Saying Susuk area of Maimbung town earlier this week. The security forces have ramped up counter-terror operations in the area recently following two deadly bomb attacks.

Gunmen kill MILF leader in North Cotabato

A local Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) leader has reportedly been killed in a gun attack in North Cotabato. The victim was allegedly gunned down by unidentified gunmen in the Sitio Campo area of Malapag village on Wednesday. Reports indicate the deceased was a MILF political committee officer and held significant influence in the local area. The police have launched an investigation; however, no suspects have been identified thus far. The attack is likely to have been motivated by the region's recent vote in favour of Muslim self-rule in the autonomous Bangsamoro region.

Measles outbreak reported in Manila

An outbreak of measles has been reported in Metro Manila, prompting public health warnings from local officials. The government has confirmed the outbreak following a noticeable rise in the number of cases reported. Almost 170 cases of measles have been confirmed so far this year, in comparison to just during the same period of 2018. At least seven children have died, while almost 250 others are being treated in hospital for symptoms related to measles.

ASG militant killed in police operation

A suspected Abu Sayyaf Group ASG) militant has reportedly been killed during a police operation on Jolo island in the Sulu province. Local reports indicate the Filipino security forces killed at least one ASG militant in an operation targeting the Sitio Barrio Militar area of Jolo in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Counter-terror operations in the region were intensified at the end of last month after two deadly bomb attacks occurred.

Bomb attack reported in Maguindanao

A vehicular bomb attack has been reported in Maguindanao. The blast occurred near the national highway in the Talayan area of Tambunan, where an explosive-laden motorbike was allegedly detonated on Tuesday. The police have responded to the incident, which is likely retaliation for government counter-terror operations targeting Islamist militants operating in the region. One person has been wounded as a result of the explosion. It remains unclear how the motorcyclist managed to evade a military checkpoint up the road.

Eight militants killed in Maguindanao

The Filipino security forces have reportedly killed eight suspected militants in a recent security operation in Maguindanao. According to reports, the suspects are thought to be members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). The security forces allegedly targeted a BIFF camp in the Sultan Sa Barongis area of the province over the weekend. At least 10 others suspected militants were also wounded in the operation.

Five ASG arrested in Sulu

At least five Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly been arrested in recent military operations in the Sulu province. The suspected ASG militants were allegedly targeted in counter-terror operations carried out in Patikul over the weekend. Local reports claim the deceased were believed to have links to the perpetrators of the cathedral bomb attack in Jolo. An explosive device was also confiscated by the security forces during the operation.

Two foreign nationals killed in anti-drug operation

Two foreign nationals have been killed during an anti-drug operation led by the Filipino police over the weekend. The operation targeted suspected drug dealers in the Tanza area of Calabarzon, where two Chinese nationals were killed when a bust-buy went wrong. It's claimed the suspects opened fire on the undercover police officers first, triggering a fatal shootout.

Heightened security measures at airports amid terror threat

Strengthened security measures have been put in place at airports across the country amid a heightened terrorist threat following two deadly terrorist attacks in Mindanao. Additional security personnel will be deployed to all major international hubs and passengers should allow extra time for security checks before boarding. 

Mosque hit by deadly grenade attack

At least two people have been killed and four others wounded in a grenade attack on a mosque in the southern city of Zamboanga. The device was thrown inside the mosque early on Wednesday morning as people were sleeping. "There is no redeeming such blasphemous murder. It is the highest form of cowardice and obscenity to attack people who at prayer," said regional leader Mujiv Hataman. The incident comes just days after 21 people were killed in a twin bomb attack at a cathedral in Jolo.

Warning issued over fake online bomb threat

The Filipino police have issued a public advisory warning over a fake bomb threat message being spread via online messages on social media. The message reportedly identify branches of the SM Supermalls chain as targets. The police have urged the public not to further spread the message as this may escalate public hysteria. The message has been investigated and the police reiterated advice to the public to remain cautious and report any suspicious behaviour.

President authorises all means necessary to tackle ASG

Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has authorised the government troops to tackle the Islamist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Philippines. The ASG are an Islamic State-affiliated militant kidnap-for-ransom group largely operating in the southern Sulu area, where last week, a Roman Catholic church was targeted in a bomb attack in Jolo. It's believed the ASG were behind the attack, which killed at least 20 people. The Filipino security forces have reportedly received clearance to deploy any ground, sea, or aerial operations necessary to tackle the ASG. Relief operations have allegedly been set up alongside the offensive to aid displaced civilians.

Suspected militant killed in Zamboanga gunfight

A suspected member of the militant Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has reportedly been killed following a gunfight with the security forces in Zamboanga. Local reports indicate the the crossfire took place in the village of Sto Nino in the San Jose area of Zamboanga city on Monday morning. The suspect was allegedly killed after resisting arrest and opening fire on the security forces during a targeted operation. Various weapons and bomb-making materials were also found at the site of the clash.

Foreign national stabbed by taxi driver

A foreign national has been stabbed and robbed by a taxi driver in an attack in Pasay City. According to local reports, 21-year-old Ye Han Chai - a Chinese national - hailed the taxi outside a Chinese restaurant and asked to be taken to a hotel in Paranaque city. The driver instead drove him into a trap near the Mall of Asia in Pasay city, where two other men were waiting to jump in the vehicle. The victim's cash and phone were stolen before he was stabbed. A police investigation has been launched and remains ongoing.

Police officer killed in Calabarzon

A Filipino police officer has been killed in an attack in Calabarzon over the weekend. The victim was targeted in an ambush attack by an unidentified gunman aboard a motorbike in the Poblacion area of Tanauan, Batangas. The attacker reportedly opened fire on the police officer whilst on the move in what appears to have been a targeted attack.

Jolo church attack death toll rises

The death toll has risen following a twin bomb explosion which hit a Roman Catholic church in Jolo over the weekend. According to the BBC, at least 20 fatalities have now been confirmed and dozens of others remain wounded. The Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for the attack, which targeted worshippers during Sunday Mass at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. The second blast was delayed, in an apparent attempt to target soldiers responding to the initial explosion. It's believed the explosions may have been carried out by IS suicide bombers. The attack came less than a week after the Muslim-majority region voted for greater autonomy in a referendum.

Twin bomb attack hits Sulu cathedral

At least 15 people have been killed in a twin bomb attack at a Roman Catholic church on the province of Sulu. A further 77 people were wounded in the attack, which took place in Jolo on Sunday morning. The first blast exploded at the cathedral before a second device went off as the security forces were responding. "The Armed Forces of the Philippines will rise to the challenge and crush these godless criminals," said President Rodrigo Duterte's Spokesman Salvador Panelo.

Referendum results support autonomy in Mindanao

The results of the recent referendum in Mindanao have come out overwhelmingly in support of the creation of the semi-autonomous Muslim region of Bangsamoro. According to reports, approximately 1.7 million people voted in favour of self-rule, while only 254,600 voted against it. The result was announced on Friday and is expected to pave way for a peaceful transition of power in the region. The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) - involved in heavy fighting with the government over the past few decades - is set to lay down arms and take up government. The peace process has seen the MILF assist the government in battling hardline Islamist extremist groups exploiting poverty to recruit in the region. It's hoped that cooperative self-rule will deter extremist activity. A few areas are yet to vote due to administrative delays but will vote on 06 February.

Two security personnel injured in NPA attack

Two Filipino government security personnel have been injured following an attack by New People's Army (NPA) rebels. The attack took place on Thursady in the Kalamansig area of the Sultan Kudarat province. According to local reports, the Marines were ambushed by a number of armed NPA rebels in the village of Datu.

Six killed in Santiago landslide

At least six people have been killed and a seventh person remains missing after a landslide occurred in the Santiago area of Agusan del Norte. According to local reports, the landslide hit along the bordering area of the Jabonga and Santiago towns on Thursday evening. Part of the area affected near Mount Manpuhaw was said to have been a New People's Army (NPA) safe-haven, where there was little-to-no police presence. Search and rescue operations have been launched and remain ongoing.

Autonomy referendum held in Mindanao

An autonomy referendum is currently being held in the Mindanao region. Nearly three million people are expected to take part in the vote, which could see greater autonomy granted to parts of Mindanao. Islamist separatist groups wish to create a self-administered area called Bangsamoro, with the referendum seeking to establish a general consensus on the matter as a political compromise following years of fighting between separatists and the government security forces. According to the BBC, final results are expected to be released by Friday with a 'yes' vote widely expected.

Two foreign hostages released in Pasay City

Two Chinese tourists who were kidnapped in Pasay City earlier this week have reportedly been released. Local reports claim 46-year-old Faquiang Guo and 50-year-old Fangmei Zhu were abducted by a group of armed men on Monday. The pair were allegedly travelling with three other companions in a luxury vehicle to Paranaque City when they were ambushed by the attackers on Atang Dela Rama Street. The hostages were released separately on Wednesday after two days of captivity - one in Las Pinas City and the second in Taguig City several hours later. One of the victims claimed their abductors were Chinese nationals who tortured them and demanded ransoms for their freedom. It has not been confirmed whether or not ransoms were paid as police investigations go forward.

Two criminals killed in police shootout

Two suspected criminals have been killed following a shootout with the police in Quezon city. The police were allegedly responding to reports of a robbery in the Novaliches area on Thursday, after a person reported two armed men seen entering an empty residential property. A shootout was triggered when the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police.

Three drug suspects killed in Laguna

At least three suspected drug traffickers have been killed and a fourth has been wounded in recent police operations in Laguna. The suspects were targeted in separate raids overnight. One suspect was killed in the Maytalang village in the Lumban area, while two others were killed and one perosn was wounded in the Parian village of Calamba city. 

Debt collector killed in Quezon city

A debt collector has reportedly been killed in Quezon city, in what's thought to have been a targeted attack. The victim has been identified as Emilio Llumo - a 56-year-old debt collector living in the Commonwealth Market area. According to reports, Llumo was shot in the head three times by an unidentified assailant, who reportedly walked away after shooting the victim.

Two killed in police gunfight

Two suspected criminals have reportedly been killed after they were involved in a gunfight with the police in Bulacan. The suspects were allegedly confronted by the police at a security checkpoint over the possession of firearms in San Jose del Monte city in the early hours of Sunday morning. An altercation occurred and a gunfight broke out, resulting in both of the suspects' deaths.

Heightened security measures in Negros Occidental

Heightened security measures have been put in place throughout the Negros Occidental area ahead of the upcoming election. According to reports, there will be n increased military presence and a strategic plan has also been prepared to minimise the risk of clashes between opposing political parties and their supporters. Security checkpoints will also be established in various areas, including Isabela, Moises Padilla, Don Salvador Benedicto, and Toboso. There will also be a heightened risk of attack from communist rebels as the election draws near.

Two killed in Cebu shooting

Two fatalities have been confirmed following a shooting in Cebu city. According to reports, the incident occurred in the village of San Nicolas on Monday evening. An unknown suspect allegedly opened fire on the victims inside a room at an inn, where the pair's bodies were later discovered that same night. A police investigation has failed to identify any potential suspects thus far.

NYE bombing suspect surrenders to police in Cotabato

A suspect thought to have been involved with a New Year's Eve bombing in Cotabato city, Maguindanao, has handed themselves into the police. According to the police, the suspect is one of two linked to the attack, which killed at least two people and wounded some 34 others.

Two killed in Bulacan stabbing

At least two people have been killed and a third person has been wounded following a stabbing incident in the Bulacan province. The stabbing reportedly occurred on Monday in the village of Tabang in the Plaridel area. It's been reported that a number of unidentified armed men broke into a residential property in what's to have been an attempted burglary gone wrong. The victims allegedly tried to stop the suspects but were stabbed in the process. The suspects managed to flee from the scene, having stolen several items. A police investigation has been launched alongside an ongoing search for the perpetrators.

Procession to take place in Manila

The procession of the Black Nazarene is due to take place in Manila on Wednesday 09 January 2019. The UK FCO has issued a travel warning on its website, advising travellers to be cautious of the potential for disruption. The day has been declared as a public holiday and some public services may be limited as a result. The procession itself will start at 05:00 local time at the Quirino Grandstand in Rizal Park, passing through the westbound lane of P.Burgos to Jones Bridge, before coming to a close at Quiapo Church in Plaza Miranda. The event is likely to take place over a duration of 22 hours and typically attracts millions of participants.

ASG demand ransom for Indonesian hostage

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have issued a ransom demand for an Indonesian national taken hostage last year. The unidentified hostage was reportedly kidnapped by ASG militants on Sunday 30 September 2018. According to reports, the ASG has demanded a sum equivalent to around $76,300 from the Indonesian government. If the ransom isn't paid, the group have threatened to kill the hostage - who it's thought is being held at an unknown location in Sulu. 

Martial law extension in Mindanao

The Filipino military has supported a further extension of martial law in Mindanao. Representatives of the armed forces confirmed the decision on Monday in a statement, explaining that the continued high risk of militant attack amid increased terrorist activity made it necessary to extend martial law in the area.

Former mayor killed in drug raid in Cotabato city

A former mayor has been shot dead in a gun attack in Cotabato city, Maguindanao. Talib Abo previously served as mayor of Parang, and was reportedly shot dead alongside his brother during a drug raid in the city on Friday morning. According to reports, the police targeted Abo for suspected drug-related offences on Gutierrez Street, while his brother was targeted separately in the Kampo Muslim area in Barangay Bagua.

Death toll rises after landslides and floods

The death toll has risen following a series of landslides and floods throughout the Bicol and Eastern Visayas areas last week. It's now believed an estimated 122 people have been confirmed dead, while a further 30 remain unaccounted for as search operations continue. The Bicol and Eastern Visayas regions were hit by severe wet weather which triggered fatal landslides and flooding on Saturday 29 December. Local authorities have warned that fatality figures are expected to rise further still as search efforts reach more remote areas and the likelihood of finding missing persons alive diminishes.

ASG free hostage in Sulu

A hostage has reportedly been released by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu province. The Filipino security forces allegedly confirmed the freeing of a 28-year-old Filipino male, Jed Qimbo, who was originally kidnapped by ASG militants in September 2017. Qimbo was abducted in the Zamboango del Norte area, but was supposedly freed due to mounting pressure from the Filipino armed forces. It's believed no ransom was paid by the Filipino government.

Death toll from Tropical Depression Usman rises to 87

The death toll from Tropical Depression Usman has reportedly rise to at least 87 fatalities. The storm hit parts of Luzon and the Visayas on Saturday 29 December 2018. According to recent local reports, the death toll reached 87 on Thursday morning, with a further 20 others still missing. An estimated 45,000 families have been affected by the storm - many of whom have bee displaced due to property damage. Relief Web has reported that the local authorities have decided to launch an emergency appeal in the aftermath of the storm. A state of calamity has been declared in the Camarines Sur, Albay, and Sorsogon areas.

Two soldiers abducted in Agusan del Sur

Two soldiers and several members of a local militia have been kidnapped during a raid on an army base in the southern Philippines. Dozens of New People's Army (NPA) rebels stormed the base in the town of Sibagat in Agusan del Sur province. Military Chief of Staff Gen. Benjamin Madrigal Jr said the army was trying to track down the militants.

Police officer shot dead in Negros Oriental

A Philippine police officer has been shot dead by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Negros Oriental. Senior Inspector Porferio Gabuya Jr was targeted by two suspects on a motocycle in Guihulngan City on Wednesday. He was rushed to hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival. “The motive that we are looking is he was killed by the NPA…He has been a target among the ranks of police officers,” said Senior Supt. Raul Tacaca.

Three drug suspects detained in Albay

Three suspected drug dealers have been detained in Legazpi City, Albay. The suspects were wanted by the police and have been described as prominent criminals. The suspects were detained at a residential property in the village of San Roque. Approximately 27 grams of crystal meth was seized from the suspects, worth an estimated 178,000 Filipino pesos (€3,000).

Security forces clash with ASG militants in Sulu

At least four fatalities have been confirmed following a clash between the Filipino security forces and a group of Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. According to local reports, a Filipino Marine and three ASG militants have been killed, while another two Marines were also wounded. A gunfight broke out between the Marines and the militants on Minis Island in Patikul during a security operation being carried out in pursuit of the militants.

Martial law extended in Mindanao

Lawmakers in the Philippines have voted in favour of extending martial law in the Mindanao region for the duration of the coming year. According to reports, 235 lawmakers from the Senate and the House of Representatives supported the extension, which allows military rule in the area to remain in place until the end of 2019. Figures released by the government indicate 28 lawmakers voted against the extension, while one lawmaker abstained from the vote altogether.

Criminal killed in police shootout

A suspected criminal has reportedly been killed in a shootout with the police in Batangas. According to reports, the suspect was thought to have stolen a motorbike, leading to his attempted arrest by the police in the village of Antipolo in the Santa Teresita area of the province on Wednesday morning. The suspect allegedly resisted arrest, leading to a shootout situation in which he was killed.

Thousands protest in Manila

Thousands of protesters have taken to the streets of Manila to march against the president. Demonstrators reportedly caused widespread disruption yesterday as they called for President Rodrigo Duterte to resign over controversial policies and policing strategy. Duterte has attracted global criticism for his brutal hardline anti-drugs campaign which has allegedly encouraged police officers to carry out extrajudicial killings. There remains a risk of further protests.

Three criminals killed in Manila police bust

At least three suspected criminals have been killed after an undercover police operation became violent in Manila. According to reports, the police were carrying out a buy-bust operation in the Gasangan area of the Baseco Compound near the ports when the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, triggering a fatal gunfight. Four firearms, a hand grenade, and an unspecified amount of what's thought to be crystal meth were recovered from the scene.

Foreign ASG hostage found in Sulu

A foreign national who was being held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Sulu has been found and retrieved by the authorities. The victim allegedly escaped captivity and was found near a remote village in Luuk on Wednesday. Local reports indicate the victim has been identified as 30-year-old Indonesian national Usman Yunos, who was allegedly abducted in September by ASG militants off the coast of Sabah, Malaysia. Another crew member who was taken from the same boat is yet to be found. 

Imam killed in gun attack in Baguio

A Muslim imam has been shot and killed in what's thought to have been a targeted gun attack in Baguio city. The incident occurred on Kayang Street on Thursday morning. According to reports, the victim has been identified as Bedejim Abdullah - an imam of the Philippine Military Academy. One unidentified armed suspect reportedly managed to escape from the scene. The motive behind the attack remains unclear as police investigations are launched.

Five suspected kidnappers arrested in Las Pinas

Five suspected kidnappers have been arrested in Las Pinas, Metro Manila, on suspicion of involvement in a number of kidnap-for-ransom operations. According to reports, the immigration and police operatives worked together to detain five Chinese nationals, all of whom are thought to be members of a kidnap-for-ransom syndicate which targets Chinese tourists. A Chinese hostage was also rescued during the arrest operation, after being held captive by the suspects for a ransom.

Suspected militant shot dead in Davao del Sur

A suspected militant has been killed in a shooting incident in the Davao del Sur province. The incident occurred in the village of Poblacion in the Magsaysay area on Sunday evening. It's alleged an unidentified shooter opened fire on the suspected militant whilst he was walking home. According to local reports, the man was thought to be a member of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group, which operates in the area. No arrests have been made thus far, while investigations remain ongoing.

Two criminals killed in Cainta

Two suspected criminals have been killed in a recent police operation in Cainta, Rizal province. The incident occurred in the San Andres area of Cainta, where the two suspects attempted to evade the security forces at a police checkpoint during the early hours of Monday morning. According to reports, the suspects were riding a motorbike and ignored orders to stop from the police, attempting to speed past the checkpoint. The attempt prompted the police to open fire, sparking a shootout in which both suspects were killed. The police have claimed the suspects were suspected robbers, thought to be members of a local criminal gang.

Soldier killed in NPA ambush, Northern Samar

A Philippine soldier has been killed and another wounded in an ambush by New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Northern Samar. The troops were targeted in the San Miguel barangay in Las Navas on Thursday. They were heading to a public market to buy food when they came under fire.

Police officers surrender over extortion charges

Seven police officers have surrendered in Las Pinas over allegations that they abducted an errand boy. The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said the officers are accused of kidnapping Cyrus Ligutan and then demanding P200,000 from a woman in exchange for a reduction in the charges against her brother, an alleged drug dealer.

Police officers sentenced for unlawful killing

Three Filipino police officers have been sentenced to jail after being found guilty of unlawfully killing teenage suspect Kian Delos Santos in 2017. The 17-year-old was allegedly shot dead in an alley following an altercation with the law enforcement during a counter-narcotics operation in the capital city of Manila. Santos was accused by the police as being a drug runner and the officers claimed they killed him in self-defence. Family members of Santos challenged that account and pushed for justice after CCTV emerged contradicting the official police report, sparking public outrage and protests. According to the BBC, all three officers were sentenced to 40 years in prison in Thursday's ruling by Judge Roldofo Azucena, who stated that "a shoot first, think later attitude can never be countenanced in a civilised society". The sentencing is unprecedented amid President Rodrigo Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs', which has received international criticism for encouraging extrajudicial killings.

Four drug suspects killed in Laguna

Four suspected drug criminals have reportedly been killed in anti-narcotics operations run by the police in Laguna. Local reports indicate the police launched operations in San Pablo City, targeting the suspects in the early hours of Wednesday morning. It's alleged the suspects were shot dead after they resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, sparking a fatal shootout.

Fifteen foreign nationals detained for online gambling

At least 15 foreign nationals have been arrested on charges of illegal online gambling. The arrests were made in Angeles City and the capital city of Manila. The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) led the separate arrest operations against targeted individuals last week. According to reports, all 15 detainees have been identified as Chinese nationals, who faces charges of violating Presidential Decree 1602, which prohibits the operation of gambling businesses without the necessary licence and permits required.

Two teachers killed in school bus accident

Two teachers have died after a school bus was involved in an accident in North Cotabato. The incident occurred on Saturday near the town of Alamanda, where the driver reportedly lost control of the vehicle, crashing into a cliff face. According to local reports, as many as 41 school students were also wounded in the accident. It's believed the accident may have been caused by a brake failure; however, investigations remain ongoing.

Five criminals killed in Laguna shootouts

At least five suspected criminals have been killed in recent shootouts in the Laguna province. According to reports, shootouts occurred while the police were carrying out anti-crime operations in the Cabuyao, Calamba City, Santa Rosa, and Santa Pedro areas over the weekend. It's alleged the shootouts weer sparked after the criminals resisted arrest and opened fire on the police forces.

Three killed after ASG militants clash with security forces

At least three people have been killed after the Filipino security forces clashed with a number of Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in Zamboanga del Sur. The altercation occurred in the Limaong area, where Filipino soldiers reportedly came under fire from suspected ASG militants. Among those killed were a female civilian and her seven-year-old child, while at least three other children were also wounded in the clash. The security forces regularly carry out patrol operations in areas where militants are thought to be active.

Four foreign nationals detained in murder probe

Four foreign nationals have been arrested in a murder investigation in Makati, Metro Manila. The detainees have all been identified as Chinese citizens. According to police, they have been detained on suspicion of killing a Chinese women in Makati. The investigation was launched after the woman's body was found at a residential property on Malugay Street on Thursday evening. It's believed that some kind of love triangle may have motivated the murder.

One killed in Pikit land dispute

A person has been killed and four others have been wounded after a violent fight broke out over a land dispute in Pikit, Cotabato. The argument occurred on Wednesday, when the Maganak and Sendad communities - armed with assault rifles and grenade launchers - clashed, forcing hundreds of local residents to relocate. According to reports, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have been working with local governmental authorities to negotiate a ceasefire.

Tropical depression causes flight disruption

Tropical Depression Samuel has caused some flight disruption in the capital city of Manila after a number of flights were cancelled on Wednesday morning. Four flights to and from Manila International Airport were cancelled due to the storm's close proximity to flight paths near Roxas City in Capiz. Sustained winds of up to 45km/h and gusts of up to 70km/h have been recorded near the storms centre and heavy rain is expected in the Capiz province.

Gunmen kill hospital official

Three unidentified gunmen have reportedly killed a hospital official in Guihulngan city, Negros Oriental. According to reports, the director of the Canlaon district hospital, was allegedly shot dead in a targeted attack on Tuesday. The attackers reportedly opened fire from a motorbike whilst the victim was travelling in his vehicle along the national highway. A police investigation has been launched and remains ongoing, although no suspects have been identified thus far.

Maguindanao IED blasts wound two soldiers

Two Filipino soldiers have been wounded after two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) went off in Maguindanao. The explosions took place over the weekend outside a local shop in Labu-Labu 2 village, near the town of Datu Hoffer. According to the police, it's believed members of the Bangdsmoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group were responsible for the attack, which appeared to have targeted the security forces.

Two IS killed in Mindanao clash

Two suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have been killed following a recent clash with the Filipino security forces in the Sultan Kudarat area of Mindanao. According to reports, the security forces were standing guard at a military checkpoint near Isulan in Tacurong City, when the suspected militants were asked to stop, but instead tried to escape. An armed fight broke out in which both suspects were shot dead. An IS flag was found in their possession, along with various weapons, including an explosive device.

Two police officers wounded in San Juan gunfight

At least two Filipino police officers have been wounded following a gunfight in the San Juan area of La Union province. The firefight broke out i the village of Nagsaag after police officers encountered armed militants. Local reports indicate the militants were members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group, which has been active in the area.

Local official wounded in Cotabato attack

A local official has been wounded along with two other people in a recent attack in Cotabato city, Maguindanao. The incident occurred on Gonzalo River Street in Rosary Heights VII, where the victims were targeted by unidentified gunmen on Wednesday evening. The local official has been identified as a village council member and is thought to be the second member of the council to have been targeted in a violent attack recently. Police investigations remain ongoing, while no claim of responsibility has been made for the attack.

Suspected militant killed in Iloilo

A suspected militant has reportedly been killed after an armed altercation with the Filipino security forces broke out in Iloilo on Monday. The suspect - thought to be a member of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group - was allegedly shot dead in the clash, which occurred in the village of Igcabugao in the Igbaras area. The local authorities have claimed the suspect resisted arrest, forcing the security forces to open fire.

Two wounded in Cotabato grenade attack

At least two people have been wounded following a suspected grenade attack in the Cotabato province. Local reports indicate an explosion was heard in the town of Pikit, near a local shop and betting station. The police are investigating the incident and believe a hand grenade was thrown at the shop by suspected militants - most likely members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group. It's thought the attack was motivated by a personal vendetta.

Militant official killed in Lanao del Sur clash

An official from the New People's Army (NPA) militant group has reportedly been killed following an armed clash in Lanao del Sur. The NPA official was allegedly shot dead during a gunfight with the Filipino security forces in forests near Sitio Narvasa, Pinilayan Tagoloan II. According to reports, the shooting broke out when militants opened fire on the security forces during a routine military patrol operation.

Eight criminals killed in security operations

At least eight suspected criminals have been killed during security operations in the Laguna province. According to reports, the Filipino security forces launched counter-crime initiatives in various parts of the province over Wednesday and Thursday, targeting locations in the Bay, Binan, Cabuyao, Calamba, Los Banos, Nagcarlan, and San Pablo City areas. Armed altercations reportedly broke out at a number of properties, with eight suspects killed and two others wounded.

Two foreigners detained on kidnapping charges

Two foreign nationals have been arrested on charges of kidnapping in Pasay City, National Capital Region (NCR). The two suspects have been identified as Taiwanese nationals who are alleged to have abducted another Taiwanese national and held them captive in their apartment. According to reports, the police became aware of the kidnapping when the hostage managed to contact them. The hostage was safely retrieved following a rescue operation. It's believed the abduction was motivated by a gambling dispute between the suspects and the victim.

Two killed in Batangas landslide

At least two fatalities have been confirmed following a landslide at a quarry in Batangas. The site is located in Lipa City, where it's believed heavy rain caused loose soil to give way. The wet weather was brought in by Typhoon Yutu (aka Rosita) which killed at least 17 people across the Philippines after hitting the northern Luzon island earlier this week.

Two hostages rescued in Sulu

Two hostages have been rescued from captivity after they were kidnapped by suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu region. According to reports, the victims were retrieved during two separate rescue operations launched by the Filipino security forces in the Panamao and Jolo areas. At least four ASG militants were also arrested.

High risk of kidnap and ransom in Sulu area

Authorities in the Philippines have issued a warning over a high risk of kidnap and ransom by the militant Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu region. The warning comes amid reports that large groups of ASG militants are planning to target business professionals and foreign vessels in the Celebes Sea. The militants are alleged to be using Malaysian-style motorised vessels to attack other boats in the region.

Two militants killed in Sulu

At least two suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed following a recent clash between the Filipino security forces and a large group of around 100 militants in the Sulu province. The altercation allegedly took place in the early hours of Tuesday morning in the Panglima Estino area, where the military have recently launched counter-terror operations 

Security forces clash with ASG in Sulu

The Filipino security forces have reportedly clashed with Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. The encounter occurred in the Lihbog Kabaw area of Panglima Estino, where a brief armed fight broke out with a number of armed militants. According to reports, at least two ASG militants have been confirmed dead, while another two are thought to have been wounded in the clash.

Typhoon Yutu makes landfall in Luzon

Thousands of people have been evacuated as Typhoon Yutu (aka Rosita) hit the northern Luzon region on Tuesday morning, bringing heavy rainfall and strong winds. According to reports, the storm brought sustained winds of up to 150km/h and gusts of up to 210km/h, ripping roofs off small houses and snapping trees in half. Around 10,000 were evacuated to safer ground; however, an estimated 12 million people could be affected overall. A red weather alert was issued shortly before the typhoon made landfall. Almost 2,000 passengers are said to be stranded across dozens of ports due to dangerous sea conditions, while flights were also been cancelled. The storm weakened after making landfall as it made its way across the Luzon island. No casualties have been reported thus far.

Four killed in Sulu clashes

At least four people have been killed following violent clashes between the Filipino armed forced and suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. According to reports, an ASG militant and three Filipino soldiers were killed during the fighting, which broke out after the security forces came across a group of armed militants in the Patikul area.

Travel warning ahead of religious holidays

A travel warning has been issued ahead of upcoming religious holidays. All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day will occur on Thursday 01 and Friday 02 November respectively. The UK FCO has advised visitors to be aware of a higher-than-usual volume of traffic throughout main towns and cities - especially on public transport - as people traditionally travel to visit family to honour the saints and to commemorate the faithful departed during this period.

Weather alert issued for Typhoon Yutu

A weather alert has been issued in the coastal areas of the northern Luzon region as Typhoon Yutu heads towards the Philippines. As of Monday morning, tropical storm warnings were raised and nine provinces in Luzon were put on high alert. According to reports, the category three storm is forecast to make landfall in Palanan Bay on Tuesday morning with sustained winds of 106mph and gusts of up to 130mph. Known locally as Rosita, the typhoon has lost momentum since hitting the US territory of the Northern Mariana Islands last week; however, the storm still has the potential to cause significant disruption. The Luzon region was badly hit by Typhoon Mangkhut last month and the incoming storm will be the 18th typhoon to hit the Philippines this year.

One killed in Cabatuan stabbing

A person has been killed following a stabbing incident in Cabatuan in the Isabela province. The incident occurred on Friday morning in the Calaocan area. The police responded to the situation and have since detained one suspect in connection with the case. It's believed the attack may have been related to drug crime, as the suspect was found with crystal meth on their person.

Jeepney drivers strike in Metro Manila

Jeepney drivers and operators have gone on strike in the capital region of Metro Manila, leading to widespread travel disruption. Jeepneys are a widely used local form of public transport, similar to taxis. The strike has left lots of passengers stranded and forced to seek alternative means of transport across Valenzuela City in Metro Manila - which is where the strike has been organised by six operators and drivers associations. The industrial action has been planned in opposition to a local government crackdown on jeepneys. 

Typhoon approaching Luzon Island

Typhoon Yutu is reportedly approaching Luzon Island, although its current trajectory means it is unlikely to make landfall. As of the early hours of Wednesday morning, the weather system was located around 2,500km east of the Philippines. Maximum sustained wind speeds are thought to reach up to 160km/h, with gusts of up to 195km/h. Rough sea conditions should be expected in the area and extreme caution should be exercised. The storm will be at its closest to the northern region of Luzon over Monday and Tuesday, and is likely to have a significant impact on coastal areas. Forecasts could change suddenly and updates should be monitored. Luzon was devastated by Typhoon Mangkhut last month, with at least 127 fatalities recorded.

Police officer killed in Basilan shooting

A police officer has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Basilan. Local reports claim the officer was shot at by unidentified assailants on a motorbike in Isabela city. The gun attack allegedly happened near Purok 4 of Menzi village. Police investigations have been launched; however, no suspects have been detained in connection with the case thus far.

Two killed in Abra shooting

Two people have been shot dead during an incident in Abra on Monday. According to local reports, the victims were two volunteers working in the governor's office and they were allegedly targeted by at least two unidentified assailants who opened fire on them whilst they rode on a motorbike through Kimmalaba village in Dolores. 

Sugarcane union workers killed in Negros Occidental

Nine members of the National Federation of Sugar Workers have been killed in an attack in Negros Occidental. Gunmen targeted the group after they tried to occupy private land in Hacienda Nene, according to police. Rights group Karapatan condemned the incident, saying it is "reflective of a kind of system that further strangles the victims of landlessness and poverty."

Militant killed in Maguindanao shootout

A suspected militant has been shot dead in a shootout in Maguindanao. The exchange of fire occurred in Mamasapano, where suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group engaged in an armed clash with the government-supported Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). According to reports, only one suspected BIFF militant was killed and no other casualties have been reported.

Two criminals killed in Quezon

Two suspected criminals have been killed in a police operation in the Quezon province. Local reports indicate two suspected robbers were shot dead during an exchange of fire with the police in the Opias area of Tayabas city. It's believed the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police first, sparking the fatal shootout

Three police officers killed in militant ambush

Three police officers have been killed and three others have been wounded following a suspected militant ambush in Camarines Sur province. The attack happened in the Napolidan village in Lupi town, where a group of unidentified armed men reportedly attacked the police officers on Thursday morning. According to reports, it's believed the attackers were members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group.

Police officer killed in militant attack

A Filipino police officer has already been killed in a suspected militant attack. Members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group reportedly ambushed a group of police officers in a village near Maria Aurora in the Aurora province on Tuesday. One police officer has been confirmed dead, while another was also wounded in the clash.

Three killed in Rizal anti-drug operation

Three suspected drug criminals have been killed amid anti-drug operations in Antipolo city, Rizal province. The suspects were killed on Monday, when security personnel attempted to arrest a suspect identified as JR Dispojo, alias 'Tisoy'. According to reports, Dispojo and some of his companions opened fire on the security forces, sparking a fatal shootout.

Two suspected IS militants killed in Davao del Sur

Two suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have reportedly been killed in counter-terror raid carried out by the Filipino security forces in Davao del Sur. According to reports, the security forces carried out separate raids in the Aplaya and Lapulabao villages in the Hagonoy area of Davao del Sure. Both militants were allegedly killed in crossfire after they opened fire on the security forces, sparking a fatal shootout.

One killed in police shootout

At least one person has been shot dead by the Filipibo police forces amidst a shootout in North Cotabato. The incident occurred on Saturday during a police operation in the New Caridad area of Tulunan town. According to reports, the suspected criminal resisted arrested and opened fire first, triggering teh fatal exchange of fire.

Eleven drug criminals killed in Bulacan operations

At least 11 suspected drug criminals have been killed in recent police operations in Bulacan. The operations have focused on a series of targeted raids and have been ongoing since early October. Some 150 suspects have been arrested across the province, with raids taking place in the Baliwag, Bocaue, Meycauayan, San Jose del Monte, San Rafael, and Santa Maria areas.

Suspected ASG militants killed in Sulu

Two suspected Abu Sayyaf group (ASG) militants have been killed after they resisted arrested in Sulu. According to reports, the Filipino government security forces were conducting a raid of a suspected ASG safe house in Indanan when the militants resisted arrest and opened fire on the security personnel. A firefight broke out, in which two militants were shot dead, while four others were arrested and remain in police custody.

Village chief killed in Cavite shooting incident

A village chief has reportedly been shot dead in a shooting incident in the Cavite province. Three others were also wounded in the incident, which occurred in Yakal village in the Silang area on Wednesday evening. According to local reports, two unidentified armed men opened fire on the victim in what is thought to have been a targeted attack. The police have launched an investigation which remains ongoing.

Coast guard stabbed in knife attack

A coast guard has reportedly been wounded in a recent knife attack in Sulu. The coast guard was inspecting tickets on board a cargo-passenger boat in the Siasi area of Sulu when he was attacked by an armed suspect. According to local reports, a knife-wielding man stabbed the coast guard several times before the coast guard retaliated, killing his attacker. It's alleged the suspect was killed in self-defence and the victim is unlikely to face charges as the police continue to investigate the incident. The motive behind the attack remains unclear.

One killed after Banaue landslide

A person has been killed after a landslide occurred over the weekend in the town of Banaue in the Ifugao province. The landslide was reportedly caused by heavy rainfall in the region, which loosened the soil in the area. No other casualties were reported; however, those in the area should remain on alert in case further landslides occur.

Former mayor wounded in suspected ambush

A former mayor has been wounded in what's thought to be a politically-motivated ambush attack. Previously a mayor of Samar, Ananias Rebato was reportedly preparing himself to run for re-election in the 2019 elections when he was attacked by four armed men on Monday morning. According to reports, the attack took place in San Jose de Buan town and Rebato's security team responded by opening fire on the attackers - leading to a brief firefight in which two people were killed and Rebato was injured. One of Rebato's bodyguards was killed in the shootout, along with one of the attackers. A police investigation into the attack has been launched and remains ongoing.

Five security personnel killed in suspected ambush

Five security personnel have been killed and another two have been wounded following a suspected ambush in the Kapai area of Lanao del Sur. The personnel were part of an operation led by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) when their vehicle was attacked by unidentified gunmen en route to Marawi city. It's possible the attackers were Islamist militants and a large-scale search operation has been launched in pursuit of the gunmen.

Five killed in Cebu shooting

At least five people have been killed in a recent shooting incident in Cebu city. According to local reports, five men were found dead along the side of a major highway in the Malubog area of the city. It's believed they were all shot dead on the Transcentral Highway. The circumstances behind the incident remain unclear as police continue with investigations.

Four militants killed in Maguindanao gunfight

At least four suspected militants have been killed and two others have been wounded following a recent gunfight with the Filipino security forces in Maguindanao. The miitary were reportedly carrying out routine search operations in the Shariff Saydona Mustapha area of Maguindanao, when they encountered a group of armed militants near Nabundas village. A gunfight allegedly broke out when the militants opened fire on the soldiers. It's believed the militants were members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group.

Police kill 13 criminals in anti-drug raids

At least 13 suspected criminals have been killed in a series of anti-narcotics raids in the Cebu province. According to reports, the police conducted the raids as part of a larger operation. The raids targeted suspected criminals in the Tejero, Ermita, and Malubog areas of Cebu city, where at least seven suspects were killed in shootouts. A further six suspects were also shot dead in a raid in the village of Tangke in Talisya city.

Two killed in shooting incidents

At least two people have been killed in recent shooting incidents in Zamboanga del Norte. According to reports, two members of the village council were targeted in two separate gun attacks on Monday. The first victim was reportedly targeted in the Lomogrom village near Godod town, while the second was killed less than half-an-hour later in San Isidro village near the town of Sergio Osmena Sr. The police have launched investigations, while it remains unclear whether or not the two incidents are linked.

Two NPA militants killed in Sorsogon

At least two suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants have been killed in an armed altercation with the Filipino security forces in the Sorsogon province. The clash occurred on Thursday in a village near the town of Bulan. According to reports, the military were on a combat operation when they encountered a group of around 15 suspected NPA militants, leading to a brief firefight in which two unidentified NPA militants were shot dead while the rest managed to escape.

Seven killed in Cebu drug bust

At least seven people have been killed and seven others have been arrested in a drug bust in the Cebu province. The police reportedly launched an anti-drug operation in Lapu-Lapu city, where seven suspected drug criminals were shot dead in an armed altercation with with the police officers, which broke out when the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire.

President declared state of calamity in typhoon-hit areas

A state of calamity has been declared in typhoon-hit areas by the President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte. The declaration comes after Super Typhoon Mangkhut (known as Typhoon Ompong in the Philippines) hit the northern island of Luzon earlier this month. According to reports, the state of calamity applies to the Cagayan, Central Luzon, Cordillera, and Ilocos regions, where widespread destruction and substantial damage has been inflicted by the typhoon. By activating Proclamation No. 593 and declaring a state of calamity, the president has freed up additional disaster relief funds and remedial measures for the disaster-struck area.

NPA militants attack police in Masbate

A group of armed New People's Army (NPA) militants have allegedly attacked the police in the Masbate province. According to reports, suspected NPA militants targeted three police detachments in the early hours of Tuesday morning. No casualties have been reported. It's believed the attacks were carried out as a form of retaliation for recent encounters with the police which allegedly set the militants back.

ASG militants release hostage in Sulu

A hostage has been released by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu province. The militant group largely operates in the Sulu area, where they alleged the kidnapped victim - who has been identified as Shariff Benjamin Asamli Ubaid, a public school teacher from Tausug - over the weekend. The victim was allegedly kidnapped en route to a bakery. Unconfirmed reports claim a ransom of 200,000 pesos (almost $3,700) was paid by the victim's family to secure the release.

Landmine blast wounds seven soldiers

At least seven Filipino soldiers have been wounded following a landmine blast in Agusan del Norte. The explosion occurred in the Buenavista area, during an armed encounter with suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants. No other casualties have been reported and it's believed the militants managed to escape following the explosion. 

Two suspected criminals killed in Quezon shootout

Two suspected criminals have been killed following a shootout with the police in Quezon City, National Capital Region. The incident occurred during a police operation along Kalayaan Avenue in the Project 6 area of the city. The two suspects were initially apprehended at gunpoint, but resisted arrest, forcing the police to chase the suspects in their car - leading to a fatal shootout. According to reports, both suspects were believed to be wanted criminals for theft and robbery.

IED blast wounds seven in South Cotabato

An improvised explosive device (IED) has wounded seven people after it exploded in General Santos City, South Cotabato. The IED was planted and detonated by suspected militants near a health clinic in the Labangal area. The security forces have launched an investigation into the incident, while casualties have been transferred to the hospital for treatment.

ASG release three foreign hostages

Three foreign hostages have been released by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Sulu. The three Indonesian fishermen were first abducted by ASG militant from waters near the Tawi-Tawi islands in January 2017. The release was negotiated by the Moro National Liberation Front and the three hostages were freed in Indanan, Sulu. 

Seven ASG killed in Sulu clash

At least seven suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and six others have been wounded following an armed clash with the Filipino security forces in Sulu. The clash occurred during a military operation being carried out in the Patikul area over the weekend. The security personnel allegedly encountered a number of armed ASG militants near the village of Bakong, sparking an armed altercation in which seven militants were killed.

Typhoon Mangkhut kills dozens

Dozens of people have been killed after Typhoon Mangkhut swept over the northern Luzon Island of the Philippines. Some 33 miners have been confirmed dead and at least 29 others remain missing after a landslide occurred in Itogon, Benguet. The storm hit the Philippines over the weekend and is one of the most powerful storms to hit the region in decades. Widespread damage and severe destruction has been caused by the typhoon. Search and rescue operations have been launched; however, it's feared the death toll will rise to more than 100. According to the BBC, the storm has since moved on to hit Hong Kong and other parts of southern China.

Thousands evacuated as Typhoon Mangkhut heads to Luzon

More than 9,000 people have been evacuated to temporary shelters as Typhoon Mangkhut heads closer to the Philippines. An estimated 5.2 million people have been told to stay indoors with the 900km-wide storm set to make landfall early on Saturday. The storm could bring winds of 205kmp/h, with gusts of up to 255kmp/h, along with intense rainfall. "Among all the typhoons this year, this one is the strongest," Hiroshi Ishihara, a meteorologist with the Japan Meteorological Agency, told the AFP.

Three killed in Cebu shooting

At least three people have been killed in a recent shooting incident in Cebu. According to reports, a prison van was ambushed by armed assailants on the outskirts of Cebu City. The van had been transporting an inmate to a court hearing in the Kalunasan area when the attack occurred. The attacker killed both prison guards before shooting the inmate dead in what is believed to have been a targeted attack. The deceased inmate had been convicted in a high-profile drug case and it's suspected his killers may have been involved in the case.

Typhoon Mangkhut causes flight disruption

The impending arrival of Typhoon Mangkhut has caused disruption to flight services in the Philippines. A number of domestic flights have been cancelled due to the severe weather conditions brought in by the storm. Most of the services affected are routine flights between Laoag and Manila. Some flights to and from Clark have also been affected. Travellers have been advised to check with their respective airline for specific flight information and updates.

Typhoon Mangkhut sparks evacuation in northern Luzon

Evacuations have begun in northern Luzon as Typhoon Mangkhut barrels towards eastern Asia. The weather system - which is thought to be the biggest typhoon of the year - is set to hit northern Philippines on Saturday, bringing sustained winds exceeding 200km/h, with even stronger gusts. Intense rainfall is also expected to accompany the stormy weather, threatening landslides and flash floods.Storm surges are also likely to affect the coastal areas where evacuation advisories are already in place. According to reports, some 10 million people are expected to be impacted by the super typhoon in the Philippines, with millions more at risk in parts of southern China, as the storm's trajectory looks set to take it into the South China Sea after it passes the Philippines.

Typhoon Mangkhut intensifies en route to Luzon

Typhoon Mangkhut has reportedly strengthened as it approaches northern parts of the Philippines. The storm could develop into a super typhoon, bringing strong winds and heavy rainfall to Luzon Island, prompting a weather warning to be issued in Northern Luzon and parts of Central and Southern Luzon. According to reports, the storm system has already passed the Pacific Islands, travelling at over 100mph as it intensifies. Sustained wind speeds are currently estimated to be around 125mph near the centre of the storm. The International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) has estimated that some 10 million people lie in the path of the typhoon, which is expected to make landfall on Saturday morning. The typhoon's strength has been compared to that of a Category 5 Atlantic Hurricane, threatening widespread damage.

Two militants killed in Caramoan clash

Two suspected militants have been killed in an armed clash with the Filipino security forces in the Caramoan area of the Camarines Sur province. According to reports, the security forces were in the middle of carrying out a combat operation patrol near a small village in Caramoan when they encountered a group of around 10 suspected militants. A crossfire broke out, in which two suspects were killed while the rest managed to escape. It's believed the suspects were members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group.

Passenger bus rams shop front in Compostela Valley

A passenger bus has reportedly rammed a shop front in the town of Nabunturan in Compostela Valley. The incident occurred on Tuesday evening, when the Metro Shuttle bus veered off the road and crashed into a small store along the roadside in New Sibonga village. The bus had been carrying around 19 passengers and was en route to New Bataan when the driver lost control of the vehicle due to slippery road conditions on the Davao-Butuan road. According to reports, at least 21 people have been wounded in the accident.

Warnings issued as Typhoon Mangkhut strengthens

Warnings have been issued as Typhoon Mangkhut strengthens en route to the Philippines. The typhoon is forecast to hit northern Philippines on Wednesday, bringing sustained winds of up to 170km/h and gusts of up to 210km/h, along with heavy rainfall. According to reports, the storm recently passed through the US Pacific Island territory of Guam, causing widespread floods. Once the system enters Filipino territory it will be renamed Typhoon Ompong. 

Two killed in Narathiwat gun attack

Two village defence volunteers have reportedly been killed and two others have been wounded following a gun attack in Narathiwat. The attack occurred over the weekend in the village of Chang Phuak in the Chanae district. According to reports, five armed men allegedly emerged from roadside bushes and opened fire on a house and a guard post. The gunmen also set fire to a pick-up truck before fleeing the scene. It remains unclear who was behind the attack as investigations go forward.

Six killed in Lanao del Sur clash

At least six people, including four Islamic State (IS) militants and two civilians, have been killed in recent fighting in Lanao del Sur. The clash broke out in the Sultan Dumalondong area over the weekend. According to reports, the Filipino forces encountered a group of armed militants near a village, leading to fatal clashes in which two civilian bystanders were killed in the crossfire. It's believed the militants involved in the clash were linked to previous militant attacks on the nearby Marawi city.

Militant killed in Maguindanao security operations

At least one suspected militant has been killed and three others have been wounded in security operations in Maguindanao. According to reports, the Filipino military has confirmed that ongoing security operations are being conducted near Shariff Aguak town against Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militants, who are thought to be operating in the area. The Maguindanao-North Cotabato highway has also been closed as operations remain ongoing.

Six killed in Lanao del Sur clashes

At least six people have been killed, including a Filipino soldier and two civilians, in clashes between the Filipino security forces and the IS-inspired Maute group in Lanao del Sur. According to reports, the fighting occurred in the Sultan Dumalondong area in the early hours of Thursday morning. Three Maute group militants were killed in the gunfight which broke out, along with a soldier and two civilians who were caught in the crossfire. Two of the militants killed are thought to be local leaders. Various firearms, ammunition, mobile phones, and explosives were also recovered from the site of the clash.

Dengue fever outbreak reported in Isabela

A dengue fever outbreak has been reported in parts of the Isabela province. Confirmed cases of dengue fever have been reported throughout various parts of the province and at least four towns have declared outbreaks of the disease, including Cabatuan, Luna, Naguillian, and Quezon. According to reports, health officials claim around 300 new cases of dengue fever have been recorded since figures were last released in August. Dengue fever is usually transmitted by mosquito bites and residents of Isabela have been advised to avoid being bitten and to seek immediate medical attention if experincing symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, and body pain.

Two drug suspects killed in Batangas

Two suspected drug criminals have been shot dead by the police in the Batangas region. The police reportedly carried out several counter-drug operations in the area, shooting two suspected dead after they resisted arrest. One suspect was killed after opening fire on the police during a buy-bust operation in Talaibon village in Ibaan, while another suspect was shot dead after opening fire on undercover police officers during an operation in Mamatid village. Overally, multiple firearms and various amounts of crystal meth worth an estimated two million pesos (around $37,000; £29,000) were recovered by the police.

Three confirmed dead from measles in Bicol

Three patients have reportedly died after contracting measles in the Bicol region. An estimated 187 confirmed cases of measles have already been reported in the region so far this year, with three fatal cases in the Albay and Camrines Norte provinces. According to reports, the figure is a steep increase from the 54 cases recorded during the same period of 2017. The health authorities have advised anyone with a fever, cough, itchy eyes, and white spots inside their mouth to seek immediate medical attention.

Mayor shot dead in Ronda, Cebu

The town mayor has reportedly been shot dead in the municipal hall of Ronda in the Cebu province. According to reports, Mayor Mariano Blanco was killed by four armed suspects in a shooting incident in the early hours of Wednesday morning. The four attackers allegedly managed to escape immediately after the shooting. The incident is thought to have been a targeted attack, possibly motivated by local political grievances or a personal dispute.

Two militants killed in Aurora clash

Two New People's Army (NPA) militants have reportedly been killed following a clash with the Filipino government security forces in Aurora. According to reports, the altercation occurred when soldiers responded to reports of extortion and harassment in a village near Maria Aurora town. A 45-minute gunfight broke out, during which two NPA militants were shot dead. Two rifles and a grenade launcher were seized from the site of the clash.

Two NPA militants detained in Cagayan

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants have reportedly been arrested in the Cagayan province. One of the militants is believed to be senior members of the NPA, while the other detainee is thought to be his wife. The suspects were arrested during a police operation in the village of Naguilian in the Calayan area of the province. Various weapons and explosives were discovered at the scene and confiscated by the police.

Cafe bomb blast reported in Isulan

A bomb blast has been reported in an internet cafe in the southern town of Isulan on Mindanao island. According to Reuters, the explosion occurred on Sunday, killing at least one person and wounding 15 others. The town was reportedly placed on lockdown as search operations were launched in pursuit of those responsible for the attack. No claim of responsibility has been made thus far; however, the Filipino security forces suspect the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were behind the bombing.

Strengthened security in Isulan

Strengthened security measures have been put in place in the town of Insulan in Sultan Kudarat following a bomb attack earlier this week. According to reports, 100 additional security personnel have been dispatched to the town in a bid to prevent further attacks. It's believed the attack was carried out by terrorists operating in the region; however, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack thus far.

Large fire breaks out in Metro Manila

A large fire has broken out and spread through the Addition Hills area of Mandaluyong in Metro Manila. At least seven people have been wounded while some 80 residential properties have been engulfed by the flames. Many of the houses were small shack-like structures built in close proximity to each other - enabling the fire to spread quickly as strong winds fanned the flames. It remains unclear precisely how the fire broke out; however, investigations remain ongoing.

Bomb blast reported in Isulan

A bomb blast has been reported in the town of Isulan in the Sultan Kudarat province. The explosion occurred yesterday during celebrations for the Hamungaya Festival. Local reports indicate the blast came from an improvised explosive device (IED) which had been planted underneath a parked motorbike along the Isulan-Bagumbayan road. At least two fatalities and 37 casualties have been reported so far. The police have launched an investigation and have advised residents to remain on alert.

Police officer killed in Quezon city

A police officer has been killed in a shooting incident in Quezon city. Local reports indicate the officer was shot dead by an unidentified assailant on a motorbike. Police officer Nephtalie Buensoceso was reportedly fired at on the corner of N Domingo Street and Broadway Street in Valencia village near Cubao on Tuesday evening. The police have launched an ongoing investigation into what is thought to have been a targeted attack.

Three drug dealers killed in security operations

Three suspected drug dealers have been shot dead during two separate security operations carried out in the Batangas and Laguna provinces. The counter-narcotics operations targeted suspected drug dealers in the San Jose area of Batangas, where two suspects were shot dead, and in the village of Barandal in Calamba city, Laguna, where a third suspect was also killed by the security forces. 

Flights cancelled at Batanes Airport

Flight services to and from Batanes Airport in Basco have been cancelled due to bad weather. According to reports, aviation authorities confirmed this morning that, as of 09:30 local time all flights would be cancelled due to heavy rain and lightning storms. The adverse weather conditions are forecast to continue to affect the area for at least the next 24 hours. Passengers have been advised to check with their respective airlines for further updates.

Earthquake hits near Eastern Samar

A 5.2-magnitude earthquake has occurred near the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines. According to reports, the earthquake hit at 12:33 local time on Thursday at a shallow depth of just one kilometre. The epicentre was located approximately 72km north-east of Guiuan town. Tremors were felt throughout the region due to the earthquake's shallow depth; however, no major damage or casualties were reported. Those in the area should be aware of possible aftershocks.

Two killed in Dagupan city shooting

Two people have been killed and a third has been wounded in a shooting incident in Dagupan city, Pangasinan. The victims were reportedly shot dead outside the City De Luxe Restaurant in Tapuac village by unidentified gunmen on motorbikes. According to reports, the gunmen opened fire as the victim's were about to get into a car in front of the restaurant. Police investigations have been launched, although no suspects have been identified just yet.

ASG militant killed in Sulu clashes

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has reportedly been killed while some 20 Filipino soldiers have been wounded in recent clashes in the Sulu province. The fighting occurred in the village of Langhub near Patikul town, where Filipino troops clashed with a group of 40 suspected ASG militants. According to reports, the fighting lasted for almost an hour and is the third such clash to break out in the area within the last week. Counter-terror operations will remain ongoing in the region, making further violent clashes highly likely.

Four drug suspects killed in police operations

At least four suspected drug dealers have been killed in separate police operations in the Calabarzon region. The counter-narcotics operations were carried out in the Laguna, Cavite, and Batangas provinces between Wednesday and Thursday. Two suspects were shot dead in Calamba city, one was killed in Tagaytay city, and a fourth suspect was killed in Tanauan city. The operations were launched as part of the ongoing crackdown on illicit drug activity int he Philippines.

Village chief killed on Negros Island

A village chief has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident on Negros Island. Local reports claim that 40-year-old Rhoy Pagapang was travelling with a village watchman to Cabcab village in Isabela when he was shot dead yesterday morning. Pagapang died from a gunshot to the head, indicating the shooting may have been a targeted attack. The victim's unidentified companion managed to flee the scene unharmed, while at least four suspect fled the scene on two motorbikes.

High risk of kidnap in Palawan

The Australian government's travel advice website has warned of a high risk of kidnap in the Palawan area. Recent insurgent attacks against the government forces have reportedly heightened the risk faced by travellers and foreign nationals. It's suspected insurgents are operating across the island and travellers should avoid the area where possible and remain vigilant.

Seven suspected militants killed in Antique clash

At least seven suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have reportedly been killed in an armed clash with the Filipino police in the province of Antique. According to local reports, the fighting broke out in the village of Atabay in the San Jose area, where the police engaged in an hour-long firefight with the militants. The crossfire was allegedly sparked when the militants resisted arrest and opened fire on the police. No civilian casualties have been reported.

Six suspected kidnappers arrested

Six suspected kidnappers have reportedly been arrested in the Laguna province. According to reports, five Chinese nationals and a Filipino national were arrested in Laguna during a police operation investigating the alleged kidnap and ransom of a Chinese national. The victim has been identified has Si Yuxiang, with reports indicating a torture video was sent to his relatives along with a demand for a cash ransom. Around 280,000 Filipino pesos (around 34,100; $5200) was reportedly paid to the kidnappers by the victim's family; however, the hostage was not released and the kidnappers demanded a further 150,000 Filipino pesos (around £2,200 ;$2,800) - at which point, the victim's family contacted the Chinese authorities.

Three killed as heavy rainfall hits Luzon Island

Three fatalities have been confirmed while five people remain missing as heavy rainfall causes floods across most of Luzon Island. The intense wet weather has been brought to the region by Monsoon Habagat and has led to the evacuations of almost 31,000 people across the island. According to reports, several areas have declared a state of emergency, including the Balanga, Cavite, Marikina, and Olongapo areas. Various parts of the Bataan, Nuewva Eciha, Pangasin, and Tarlac areas have also been severely affected.

Two soldiers wounded in Quezon clash

Two Filipino army soldiers have reportedly been wounded following an armed clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in Quezon. According to reports, the altercation took place in the Mauban area on Sunday afternoon. Approximately 12 NPA militants allegedly clashed with the security forces near Cagsiay village, leading to a 30-minute gunfight before the militants retreated. No other casualties have been reported.

Heavy rains causes floods in Manila

Heavy rain has caused flash floods across Manilla over the weekend. At least three fatalities have been reported in flood-related incidents. Major dams and rivers reportedly overflowed amid the heavy rainfall, leading to sudden flooding throughout low-lying areas. According to the BBC, a massive clean-up operation has been launched after large amounts of rubbish was washed up on roads and valuables were swept away. Throughout the wet season so far, thousands of resident shave had to be evacuated from their homes.

Man killed in Iloilo stabbing

A 41-year-old man has reportedly been killed in a stabbing incident in Iloilo. The victim has been identified as Harvender Singh, a local moneylender. Singh's body was found near Lupa village in Santa Barbara with several stab wounds to his back and a slash wound across his neck. It's believed Singh was on his way home from collecting cash payments when he was attacked. According to reports, the victim's wallet was missing - indicating he was targeted for the large sum of cash on his person.

Two terror suspects killed in North Cotabato shootout

Two suspected terrorists have reportedly been killed in a shootout in North Cotabato. The men were allegedly transporting an improvised explosive device (IED) when they were shot dead by the security forces in the M'lang area of North Cotabato. The suspects were initially spotted by police at a security checkpoint near Sangat village, where they sped away from the authorities after being asked to stop for inspection. A chase ensued, during which gunfire was exchanged and two suspects were shot dead.

Floods cause travel disruption in Manila

Recent floods have reportedly caused travel disruption throughout large parts of Manila. A massive traffic jam was reported on Friday morning after heavy downpours caused a portion of a main highway to flood, rendering it unusable. According to reports, floods have also been experienced in the wider parts of Metro Manila, as well as in nearby Quezon city. Travellers should be aware of the disruption and continued risk of further floods.

Shooting reported in Magsaysay

A fatal shooting has been reported in the town of Magsaysay in the Occidental Mindoro province. A local village councillor was reportedly shot dead by unknown assailants in the Sitio Nalwak area of Purnaga village. The motive behind the attack remains unclear and no suspects have been identified as police investigations go forward.

One killed in anti-drug operations

A person has been killed while some 18 others have been arrested in anti-drug operations in the Cavite province. One suspect was shot dead after an altercation broke out with Filipino security forces in the town of Mendez. Arrests were also made in the Alfonso, Cavite City, Dasmarinas City, General Mariano Alverez, Kawit, Naic, Noveleta, and Tanza areas. The security forces have continued to carry out aggressive counter-narcotics operations as part of the government's hardline stance on illegal drug activity.

Prison officer shot dead in Manila

A prison officer has reportedly been shot dead by an unidentified gunmen in Manila. The attack happened in the Santa Ana area of the capital city on Thursday morning. According to local reports, 49-year-old George Delfin was shot several times near a corner junction where Orobi Street meets Sagrada Familia. Police investigations have been launched and remain ongoing.

IED blast hits Masbate bridge

An explosion from an improvised explosive device (IED) has hit a bridge in Masbate City. The blast was first reported on Wednesday evening, when the police responded to the scene. Local reports claim the IED was placed on the bridge by two unidentified men. While no casualties have been reported, a docked passenger boat was destroyed in the explosion. Parts of a sim card were recovered from the site of the explosion, leading police to suspect the IED was remotely detonated.

Suspected criminal shot dead in Quezon

A suspected criminal has reportedly been shot dead in a shoot out with the police in Quezon City. The altercation reportedly broke out on Wednesday evening during an arrest operation in the Nagkaisang Nayon village. According to local reports, the suspect resisted arrest and opened fire on police personnel - forcing the police to respond with gunfire, killing the suspect on the spot.

Heightened airport security measures in place

Heightened airport security measures have been put in place at Ninoy Aquino International Airport following a car bombing in Lamitan, Basilan. The attack killed at least 11 people and left scores more wounded. Additional security personnel have been deployed to carry out foot patrols, while random vehicle checks will also be conducted. Travellers should allow extra time for the additional security measures.

IED blast wounds two in Rizal

Two people have been wounded after getting caught in a blast from an improvised explosive device (IED) in Rizal province. Local reports indicate the IED had been planted along a roadside - most likely by militants - in the city of Antipolo, where two military trucks were allegedly passing through when the explosion occurred. It's suspected the blast was intended to target the security forces; however, two civilians who were cycling in the area were injured instead. The IED was most likely planted by members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group.

Police officers arrested in anti-kidnapping operation

Five police officers have been arrested on suspicion of kidnap and ransom. The arrests were made during an anti-kidnapping operation in Taguig City in the National Capital Region. A brief altercation broke out at the construction site where the police officers were apprehended - during which, one suspect  was shot dead while the other five were safely detained. It's believed all six suspects were active police officers taking part of a kidnap-for-ransom group.

Car bombing hits Basilan

A car bomb attack has been reported in the Basilan province, where an explosive-laden vehicle was reportedly detonated at a military checkpoint in Lamitan City. The explosion killed at least 11 people, including four attackers and at least one Filipino soldier who had been stationed at the checkpoint. At least two attackers have also been wounded. Preliminary reports have claimed the person who was driving the vehicle appeared to be of foreign nationality. The Islamic State (IS) has reportedly claimed responsibility for the attack.

President signs degree creating autonomous Islamic region

President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law which will create an autonomous Islamic region. The Bangsamoro Organic Law is intended to aid peace efforts and will allegedly help curb violent extremism in the southern islands. According to reports, the autonomous region would at first be governed by a transitional authority before a regional parliament takes over. The law was originally proposed four years ago as part of a peace deal with the separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

Militant killed in Lanao del Sur military operation

A suspected militant has been killed during a military operation in the Lanao del Sur province. According to reports, the suspect was believed to be a member of the Islamist Maute group. The operation was carried out in the Masiu area, where militants initially fired on the security forces. sparking a brief gunfight before at least one was shot dead while the others escaped.

MILF militants to be disarmed in government peace deal

Between 30,000 to 40,000 Mindanao Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) militants are due to be disarmed in accordance with a planned peace deal struck between the MILF leadership and the Filipino government. The disarmament will take place if the proposed deal in signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte and enforced. 

Massive fire breaks out in Jolo

A massive fire has broke  out in Jolo, Sulu province, where an estimated 2,500 homes have been destroyed. At least eight people have been injured int he blaze, which broke out on Tuesday afternoon in Walled City before spreading to an adjacent village. Fire fighters responded to the incident, engaging in a nine-hour battle to extinguish the fire. The cause of the blaze remains unclear as investigations are launched.

Traffic officer killed in San Pablo shooting

A traffic enforcement officer has reportedly been shot dead following an incident in central San Pablo city in the Laguna province.According to reports, the officer was reprimanding a suspect for a traffic violation on Regidar Street when they opened fire on him in the road. The suspect reportedly managed to flee the scene immediately after the altercation. The local police are investigating at the scene.

One killed in Albay shooting

At least one person has been killed following a shooting incident in the Albay province. The incident occurred in Penafrancia village near Daraga town in the early hours of Friday morning. According to reports, a local radio station anchor was attacked outside his house and was shot at close range by at least one suspect armed with an automatic firearm. Police investigations have been launched and several suspects have alleged been identified.

Terror suspect killed in South Cotabato anti-terror operation

A suspected terrorist has been killed and another has been arrested in a counter-terror operation in South Cotabato. The police launched a raid in the Fatima area of General Santos City, where it was believed members of the Islamist Maute terror group were hiding out. One suspect - thought to be an expert bomb maker - was shot dead by police when he resisted arrest. At least one police officer was also wounded in the operation.

Tourist wounded in Manila shooting

A South Korean tourist has been wounded following a shooting incident in the capital city of Manila. The incident occurred just outside a hotel in central Manila, where it's believed the suspect was getting in a taxi when they were shot by unidentified armed men on a motorbike in the early hours of Sunday morning. The police have launched an investigation, suspecting the incident to be an attempted mugging. Tourists are often targeted by petty thieves and criminals for their perceived affluence.

Weather warnings issued as Tropical Storm Henry approaches

An orange weather warning has been issued in parts of northern-central Philippines as Tropical Storm Henry approaches. The Bataan, Cavite, Metro Manila, and Zambales areas are all under the orange alert due to a high risk of heavy downpours causing flash floods and landslides. Those in the areas affected should be prepared to evacuate at short notice.

Businessman kidnapped in Kabasalan

A businessman has reportedly been kidnapped in the town of Kabasalan in the Zamboanga Sibugay province. The victim was allegedly abducted by six unidentified suspects from his residence in Nazareth village. According to reports, the abductors were dressed in military and police uniforms. It's believed the victim was taken aboard a boat, which set out in the direction of Naga and Payao. Investigations have been launched and remain ongoing.

Tropical cyclone warnings issued

A tropical cyclone warning has been issued in the northern provinces as Tropical Depression Henry approaches. There is thought to be a high risk of the weather system developing into a cyclone as it progresses towards the Babuyan Islands and Northern Luzon. The adverse weather is likely to bring heavy rain which could cause flash floods and heighten the risk of landslides.

Vice mayor killed in Tawi-Tawi

A vice mayor has been killed in the Sapa-Sapa area of Tawi-Tawi. Vice Mayor Alrashid Mohammad Alih was allegedly shot dead by a lone gunman on Governor Alvares Street. Alih was reportedly sat in a vehicle with his wife, accompanied by a security escort, when the suspect walked up to the side of the vehicle and opened fire. Alih is the second vice mayor to be killed within a week after the vice mayor of Cavite was shot dead on Saturday. The mayors of Tanauan and Nueva Ecija was also killed in separate gun attacks earlier this month.

Seven killed in clashes with Abu Sayyaf

At least seven fatalities have been confirmed following clashes between Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants and the government security forces in Sulu. Local reports claim that three ASG militants were killed after fighting broke out in the Kuppong village in Indanan in the early hours of Thursday morning. A further three militants were also killed, along with one Filipino soldier, in a clash in the Panglayahan village in Patikul. Around 11 security personnel were also wounded in the fighting.

Three killed in South Cotabato murder-suicide

Three people - a father and his two sons - have been reported dead as the police investigate an apparent murder-suicide in South Cotabato. The investigation was launched after the father and his sons were discovered dead in their family apartment in the Tantangan area. According to reports, the father had previously threatened to kill his sons, leading the police to believe he killed his children before committing suicide.

Metro Manila to hold earthquake drill

The Metro Manila area is due to practice a surprise earthquake drill later this month. The authorities announced the plans on Wednesday morning, stating that the drill could take place any time between the second week and third week of July. Four main evacuation camps will be set up in the northern, eastern, southern, and western parts of the district and are expected to be based at various memorial centres and golf courses. Telecommunications networks are due to announce the drill via text message. 

President Duterte to discuss terror threat with Malaysian PM

Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte is scheduled to meet with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to discuss the growing threat of terrorism. The leaders will meet in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Monday 16 July and are expected to discuss the issue of the growing Islamist militant networks operating between the two countries. Regional counter-terror operations organised between Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines are already in place, mainly aimed at preventing terrorist groups from establishing operational bases.

Five killed as boat capsizes in Lake Buhi

At least five people have been killed after a boat accident occurred on a lake in the Camarines Sur province over the weekend. According to local reports, a boat carrying at least 12 people capsized on Lake Buhi near the San Buena area of Buhi town. While seven people were successfully rescued, at least five people have been confirmed dead. It's believed the boat was overloaded, surpassing the safe maximum passenger capacity and causing the boat to sink.

Suspect shot down in Archbishop's palace

An armed suspect has been shot down inside the Archbishop's palace in Cebu city. On Tuesday morning, the police responded to reports of a male intruder in the palace. It's been reported that the suspect was demanding an audience with Archbishop Jose Palma when the police intervened. The suspect was allegedly shot dead by the police when he attempted to fire a weapon. 

Typhoon Maria heightens risk of floods

A warning has been issued in northern parts of the Philippines due to a high risk of floods as Typhoon Maria (aka Typhoon Gardo) brings heavy rainfall to the area. The typhoon is not expected to hit the Philippines; however, it is expected to have significant impact in the Luzon and Visayas areas. The stormy weather may increase the risk of flash floods and landslides, with thunderstorms also forecast in the capital region.

BIFF commander killed in Maguindanao clashes

A commander from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) has been killed in clashes with troops in the Mamasapano area of Maguindanao. An army lieutenant, Junibert Zunio of the 40th Infantry Battalion, also died during the exchange on Wednesday. Separate clashes were also reported in the village of Dapiawan but no injuries have been reported.

Mayor shot dead in Cabanatuan City

A mayor has been shot dead in Cabanatuan City in Nueva Ecija province. Ferdinand Bote was gubbed down outside the office of the National Irrigation Administration office. The incident occurred a day after another mayor was shot dead in Batangas. No arrests have been made in connection with the attack.

NPA fighter killed in Masbate clash

A member of the New People's Army (NPA) has been killed during clashes with the Philippine army in Masbate province. The encounter took place in the remote village of Milagros on Sunday evening. An army spokesman said five NPA rebels exchanged fire with troops before the assailants fled.

Catholics accuse President Duterte of blasphemy

The Catholic community in the Philippines - a largely Catholic country - has accused the Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte of blasphemy after he called God 'stupid' in a televised speech. According to the BBC, Duterte criticised the Biblical story of Adam and Eve and the concept of original sin, asking "Who is this stupid God?". Local Catholic Bishop Arturo Bastes responded to the President's controversial comments by encouraging people to pray for his "blasphemous utterances and dictatorial tendencies" to come to an end. Duterte has been the subject of much controversy during his tenure, including his brutal war on drugs and misogynistic comments.

Seven killed in counter-drug operations

At least seven people have been killed in counter-drug operations in Calabarzon. The police conducted several operations in the region overnight, killing seven suspected drug traffickers and arresting three others. The suspects were targeted in the Alapan, Antipolo City, Batangas, Calamba City, Cavite, Imus City, Inarawan, Laguna, Majada, Rizal, Tanauan, and Trapiche areas.

Chinese trader kidnapped in Laguna

A Chinese trader has reportedly been kidnapped from Cabuyao City in Laguna. Local reports claim the victim was a 30-year-old Chinese businessman linked to the stainless steel trading industry. Police reports indicate the victim was thought to have been abducted by unidentified attackers in a white van in the suburban Banlic area shortly before midday on Sunday. A specialist anti-kidnapping police unit has been put on the case as investigations continue.

One killed in suspected police brutality

A person has been killed in suspected case of police brutality in the Novaliches area of Quezon City. The victim was reportedly beaten to death whilst in police custody earlier this week. The family of the victim issued a formal complaint, sparking an investigation into the incident. Five police officers have been suspended from their duties whilst there are under investigation.

Flash floods reported in Manila

Flash floods have been reported in parts of Metro Manila. Heavy rain has caused the floods, which have resulted in widespread disruption throughout various parts of the region. Various road closures have been put in place, affecting traffic in the Todal area and throughout most parts of Quezon City.

Six soldiers wounded in roadside bombing

A roadside bombing has wounded at least six Filipino soldiers in North Cotabato. The blast was reported on Thursday afternoon in Magpet town, where soldiers from the Filipino Army's 19th Infantry Battalion were travelling in a vehicle on a farm-to-market road near the village of Binay. According to reports, New People's Army (NPA) militants are thought to be responsible for the attack.

Mindanao fighting displaces 11,000

Fighting between the Filipino forces and the Islamist Maute group has reportedly displaced some 11,000 people on Mindanao Island. Clashes have escalated recently as the security forces ramp up efforts to flush militants out of the area. Martial law was declared in the region by the president, allowing the security forces to undertake counter-terror operations to clear the area through all necessary means.

ASG kidnap two women in Sulu

Two women have reportedly been abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu province. A group of 20 armed ASG militants allegedly targeted the victims on Wednesday morning, storming their house in the Kandaga village in Talipao town. According to reports, the hostages have been identified as the town mayor's half-sister and 60-year-old stepmother. Talipao Mayor Nazer Tulawie believes the abduction was retaliation for the mayor's cooperation with military counter-terror operations in the area. The Filipino army has reportedly deployed the special forces in pursuit of the militants.

Police chief shot dead in Isabela

A police chief has reportedly been shot dead during a counter-narcotics operation in Isabela town, Cagayan Valley. According to local reports, the police were conducting a drug raid on a property in the town when a gunfight broke out. It's believed the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, sparking a fatal crossfire.

Airstrike kills five IS in Lanao del Sur

At least five Islamic State (IS) militants have reportedly been killed in a series of airstrikes carried out by the Filipino military in Lanao del Sur. The airstrikes were allegedly accompanied by ground operations targeting suspected IS hideouts in the Marawi area, where some 40 militants were believed to be operating. According to reports, a fatal gunfight broke out between the militants and the security forces.

Suspected criminal killed in Cavite

A suspected criminal has reportedly been killed in the Cavite province. Local reports indicate the suspect had met with another suspected criminal in San Lorenzo village of Dasmarinas last night to sell illegal firearms. Both suspects fled when the police arrived at the scene, leading to a police chase which culminated in the death of one of the suspects while the other managed to escape. Illegal narcotics were also discovered during the encounter.

Nine killed in BIFF clashes

At least nine people have been killed in clashes between the security forces and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). Five BIFF militants were killed in a firefight in the Datu Unsay area of Maguindanao, while three others were killed in another gunfight which broke out in the Midsayap area of North Cotabato. At least one civilian bystander was also killed by a stray bullet.

Suspect killed in counter-drug operations

At least one suspected drug criminal had been killed while four others have been arrested in counter-drug operations in the Oriental Mindoro area. The police conducted the operation on Tuesday evening in Puerto Galera, where a fatal shootout reportedly broke out between the police and the suspects.

Weather warnings issued in Metro Manila

Weather warnings have been issued in the capital region of Metro Manila, where heavy rain is expected to cause widespread disruption. The yellow warning indicates heavy rainfall which could lead to flash floods in low-lying areas. The warning has been issued to Metro Manila, Bataan, Batangas, and Zambales areas. 

Seven killed in Maguindanao clashes

At least seven people have been killed and eight others have been wounded in recent clashes between the military and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao. On Monday morning, one soldier and three BIFF militants were killed, while six other militants were wounded in a gunfight in the Liguasan Delta area. A further three BIFF militants were also killed and two others were wounded in another gunfight in the village of Meta in Datu Unsay on Monday evening.

Airstrike kills 15 militants in Maguindanao

At least 15 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have been killed and eight others have been wounded in an airstrike conducted in the Cotabato area of Maguindanao on Sunday. The Filipino military carried out the airstrike, which reportedly targeted a suspected bomb-making facility.

Rebels surrender to police in Albay

Approximately 22 members of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group have reportedly handed themselves into the police in the Albay province. The rebels allegedly surrendered themselves to the Tactical Operations unit in Bicol. Various firearms were also surrendered. The rebels were believed to operate in the neighbouring Sorsogon area.

Soldier killed in landmine blast

A Filipino soldier has been killed and two other have been wounded after a landmine exploded in the Quezon province. The blast occurred near the Bagong Silang village on the outskirts of Lopez town. The soldiers had been travelled as part of a convoy en route to another military compound in Gumaca. It's believed the landmine was planted by militants.

Police officer killed in NPA clash

A Filipino police officer has reportedly been killed in an armed encounter with suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants. The altercation took place near Sagada town in the Mountain province on Tuesday morning. According to reports, at least nine other police personnel were also wounded in the clash.

Six soldiers wounded in NAP clash

Six Filipino soldiers have reportedly been wounded after they clashed with militants of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group in the Isabela province. According to reports, the fighting broke out in the village of Mabbayad, on the outskirts of Echague town. 

Six drug suspects killed in Bulacan

At least six suspected drug criminals have been killed in recent clashes with the security forces in Bulacan. The fighting broke out during a counter-narctoic operation which was launched in the Malolos area - during which, as many as 42 other suspects were also arrested.

Laguna drug operations kill three suspects

At least three suspected drug criminals have been killed in recent counter-drug operations in the Laguna province. The suspects were reportedly apprehended separately, with one killed in a shootout in San Pablo city and the other two killed in a sting operation in Cabuyao city.

South Korean shot dead in Manila

A South Korean national has reportedly been shot dead in Manila. The South Korean authorities confirmed the victim's nationality after receiving reports of the attack, which happened last week. The 58-year-old victim is yet to be formally identified, while the police continue investigations into the gun attack, as potential motives remain unclear.

Drug criminal shot dead in Manila

A well known drug criminal has been shot dead in police operations in the wider Metro Manila area. The suspect has been identified as 'Tarat'  and was a notorious drug trafficker wanted by the Filipino authorities. According to reports, the suspect engaged in a firefight with the police on Macapagal Avenue in the Tambo area of Paranaque city, Metro Manila.

Three killed in bus accident

At least three people have been killed and 13 others have been wounded in an accident involving a passenger bus in the Tanauan area of the Leyte province. According to reports, the bus fell off a bridge near the village of Solano shortly after midnight last night. The precise cause of the accident remains unclear as investigations are launched.

Two killed in Sulu clashes

At least two people have been killed and as many as 10 others have been wounded in recent clashes in the Sulu region. According to reports, fighting broke out in the Maimbung area of Sulu, where members of the Moro National Liberation Front clashed with another armed group. A government military force has been deployed to the area to prevent further clashes.

Pantao Ragat mayor targeted in gun attack

The mayor of Pantao Ragat has been targeted in a gun attack in Lanao del Norte. Mohammad Lacson Lantud's convoy was reportedly ambushed by unidentified gunmen in the Cabasagan village on Sunday morning. While the mayor survived the attack, four security personnel were killed and three others were wounded. The motive behind the attack remains unclear as investigations move forward.

Two women arrested in drug bust

Two women have been arrested in a drug bust operation in the Rizal province. The anti-narcotics operation targeted the suspected drug dealers in the San Isidro area of Cainta. Reports claim the drug haul - containing methamphetamine and marijuana - was estimated to have a street value as high as 2.75 million Filipino pesos (approximately $53,000). 

Soldier killed in militant clash in Quezon

A Filipino soldier has been killed along with several suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in the Quezon province. A clash broke out between the security forces and the militants in a village near General Nakar town on Monday evening. Local reports indicate a brief gunfight took place, in which the soldier was killed and an unknown number of NPA casualties were also inflicted before the militants fled.

Twelve killed in Sulu clashes

At least 12 people have been killed and 15 others have been wounded following a series of clashes between the Filipino security forces and the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu area. The fighting broke out during a hostage rescue operation being carried out by the military near the town of Patiktul on Sunday. Reports indicate that at least two soldiers and 10 ASG militants were among those killed.

Two ASG militants killed in Sulu clash

Two suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly been killed in an armed altercation with the Filipino security forces in Sulu. The clash broke out on Wednesday, in the Lagasan area of Parang, Sulu. It's thought the security forces encountered the militants during an operation in the Sulu area, where the ASG are known to operate. 

Five soldiers wounded in NPA clash

Five Filipino soldiers have been wounded in a clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in the Cagayan province. The fighting broke out in the Balani village in the Santo Nino area on Thursday. Reports claim the security forces were performing a routine patrol in the area when they encountered a group of armed NPA militants - leading to a brief gunfight.

Balanga City mall engulfed by fire

A shopping mall in the Bataan province has been engulfed by a fire. The blaze originally broke out on Tuesday and firefighters have been tackling it ever since. The fire started on the second floor of Robinsons Galleria Victoria mall in Balanga City, and spread to the third floor, where it has now been contained but continues to burn. The building was evacuated on Tuesday and no casualties have been reported.

ASG kidnap four in Sulu

At least four people have been kidnapped by suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in Sulu. Two female police officers were allegedly kidnapped on Sunday afternoon alongside two other victims by a group of 11 ASG militants in the Barangay Liang area of Patikul. According to reports, an initial ransom demand of five million Filipino pesos (around £70,651; $96,318; €80,248) has been made - the authorities are yet to respond.

Three hitmen killed in police clash

Three suspected hitmen have been killed in an armed clash with the police in Quezon city. The armed suspects stopped at a police checkpoint in Payatas when they opened fire on the police from their motorbikes. Reports indicate a fatal gunfight broke out, in which three suspects were killed and a fourth was wounded.

Thousands march in Labour Day protest

Around 10,000 people have gathered in Manila to partake in a Labour Day protest rally. Worker groups have launched the rally at the Mendiola Peace Arch in Manila to protest against the government's policy of 'contractualisation'. Protesters are demanding an end to the policy - the termination of which is an undelivered campaign promise by President Duterte. According to reports, some 700 security personnel have been deployed in response to the demonstration. General disruption should be expected throughout Metro Manila and large crowds should be avoided where possible as the protest could suddenly turn violent.

Gunmen kill prison officer in Laguna

A prison officer has been shot dead by two unidentified gunmen in the Laguna province. The shooting occurred early Monday morning in the Makiling area of Calamba city. The gunmen allegedly managed to flee the scene on a motorbike.

Two Islamist suspects detained in Laguna

Two suspected Islamic State (IS) militants have been arrested in Laguna. The suspects were detained in separate arrest operations last night. One suspect was apprehended in Cabuyao city, while the other was arrested in Santa Rosa. Various extremist material, weapons, and explosives were confiscated from both suspects.

Boracay Island to remain closed for six months

Boracay Island is to remain closed for the next six months to allow for environmental rehabilitation. The six-month closure came into effect today and will last until 26 October 2018 - meaning no tourists will be allowed to visit the usually popular island resort during the summer months. Environmental concerns were raised after severe levels of pollution were noticed, with authorities suspecting a direct correlation with the growing tourist industry. The UK FCO has issued a travel update warning visitors of the temporary closure.

Twenty-three IS groups active in southern Philippines

At least 23 Islamist groups are reportedly active in the southern Philippines region. The groups were identified by the intelligence services and were said to be actively recruiting throughout the region. Since the government forces took back Marawi city last year, Islamist militant groups have been regrouping and restrategising whilst pushing large recruitment drives to up numbers. According to reports, the main bulk of the Islamist forces which stormed Marawi city splintered into many smaller groups which are now re-organising themselves.

Thirteen suspects killed in anti-drug raids

A massive anti-drug operation has killed 13 suspects and arrested 58 more in the Bulacan province. A total of 49 raids were carried out over the last few days, targeting suspected drug hotspots across the province. Reports claim that fatal clashes broke out when armed suspects resisted arrest and opened fire.

Two killed in police clash

At least two suspected criminals have been killed and a third has been arrested in a clash with the police in Zamboanga del Norte. The police reportedly encountered an armed gang in the Sitio Gulit area of Barangay Lakiki, Sibuco city. One of those killed is thought to be a gang leader.

Civilian killed by militants in Surigao del Norte

A civilian has reportedly been killed by suspected New People's Army (NPA) militants in Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte. The victim has been identified as 32-year-old Jepti Acido and it's believed he was targeted on the assumption he was a government spy. However, local reports claim that Acido was a Jehovah's Witness and his religion would have banned him from engaging in any activity associated with a political agenda. Two other Jehovah's Witnesses who were with Acido at the time of the attack were also wounded.

President authorised detention of Australian nun

Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has confirmed that he personally authorised the detention of a 71-year-old Australian nun. Sister Patricia Fox was arrested earlier this week, with the authorities claiming she was suspected of violating her visa by taking part in political activity. The nun's detention sparked protests by members of Catholic community demanding her release. According to the BBC, Fox was released on Tuesday without charge and denies any wrongdoing, stating that her presence at pro-human rights rallies for farmers was not a political statement but a religion-guided effort to support the poor.

Two killed in Cebu shooting

At least two people have been killed in a shooting incident in the Cebu province. The incident occurred in the Tulay area of Minglanilla, where the victims were allegedly targeted by an unidentified gunman in their house. The assailant is believed to have fled immediately after the shooting, sparking a police search operation. 

Two NPA killed in Davao del Sur

Two New People's Army (NPA) militants have reportedly been killed in the Magsaysay area of Davao del Sur. The militants were allegedly killed during an armed encounter with the Filipino security forces in Bala village. Pursuit operations have been launched in search of other NPA militants thought to be operating in the area.

Grenade blast targets government warehouse in Isabela

A grenade attack has targeted a government warehouse in Isabela city, Zamboanga Peninsula. The blast hit a warehouse building used by the Department of Public Works and Highways. While no casualties were reported, some damage was caused to the building. A police investigation has been launched, with the authorities suspecting that Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants were behind the attack.

Chemical leak sparks evacuation in Davao

A chemical leak sparked an evacuation in the Barangay Sasa area of Davao city after almost 50 people experienced respiratory issues. Reports state that the police evacuated the area after a strange smell was noticed and at least 47 people immediately became unwell. Further investigations found that the leak had originated from 15 bottles of Jalem 500 EC - an agricultural insecticide - which had been improperly disposed of. 

Strengthened security on US-Philippines flights

Philippine Airlines are expected to strengthen security on flights to the US. The airline has advised passengers to allow extra time for additional security checks. US-bound travellers should arrive at the airport some three hours prior to the flight's scheduled departure time. For the time being, flights to Guam, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco will be affected by the heightened security measures.

President threatens to arrest ICC prosecutor

President Rodrigo Duterte has reportedly threatened International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, with arrest. Duterte allegedly stated that if Bensouda would be detained if she arrived in the Philippines to carry out any form of investigation into allegations of extrajudicial killings in his war on drugs.

Twelve BIFF killed in Maguindanao

At least 12 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have been killed in clashes with the security forces in the Maguindanao province. Fighting broke out when the Filipino forces seized two BIFF camps in the Saidana and Salibo areas, sparking violent resistance from BIFF militants. Two soldiers were also wounded in the fighting and a large number of weapons and explosives were also confiscated.

IS threat remains high

The Filipino authorities have issued a reminder that the threat of terrorist attack from the Islamic State (IS) remains high throughout the country. The reminder was issued in light of a recent decrease in terrorist attacks following the end of the Marawi siege in October last year. Reports indicate that IS cells have reverted to more sporadic lone-wolf attacks targeting tourist areas whilst ramping up recruitment efforts.

Two hostages rescued in Bulacan

Two kidnap hostages have been rescued in a special operation launched in the Bulacan province. The Filipino security forces conducted the rescue operation in the Plaridel area, where two hostages were safely retrieved and three suspected abductors were arrested. One of the hostages has been identified as a Japanese national.

Five killed in Laguna gunfight

At least five people have been killed and six others have been wounded after a gunfight broke out during a police operation in the Laguna province. The police were conducting an operation investigating a kidnap case in San Pablo city, when they approached a suspicious vehicle in the San Nicholas area. The suspects reportedly opened fire on the police from inside the vehicle, sparking a gunfight. Four suspects and one police officer were killed, while one suspect, a bystander, and four police officers were wounded.

Roadside bomb blast wounds one in Cotabato

A woman has been wounded after a roadside bomb exploded in Cotabato city over the weekend. The incident occurred on part of the main road in the Purok Dapdap area of Rosary Heights. No claim of responsibility has been made as a police investigation is launched.

Seventeen missing after boat capsizes near Fortune Island

At least 17 crew members of a boat are missing after their landing craft presumedly capsized off the coast of Fortune Island, Batangas. The boat reportedly went adrift south of Manila, and is thought to have capsized due to rough sea conditions. The local coast guard has launched search and rescue operations. According to Reuters, two other sea accidents occurred over the weekend, with both boats capsizing due to strong waves.

Bulgarian national killed in police shooting

A Bulgarian national has been shot dead by the police in Jakarta. The police opened fire when the suspect resisted arrest, attacking two police officers with a sharp weapon. According to reports, the suspect was wanted by the police for suspected involvement in ATM skimming - which is when thieves use an electronic card reader to steal a person's credit card details. The card readers are often designed to look like part of an ATM machine.

President Duterte offers peace talks with NPA

President Rodrigo Duterte has offered peace talks with the New People's Army (NPA). The offer was made during a cabinet meeting, in which he laid out two conditions before peace talks could take place. Duterte stated that the NPA had to promise not to try to form a revolutionary left-wing government and to cease the alleged exploitation of businesses and rural farmers.

Tourist island of Boracay to temporarily close

The popular tourist island of Boracay is due to temporarily close for six months due to environmental concerns. The BBC has reported that the once pristine white-sand beaches were becoming increasingly littered as they attracted more tourists. The tourism industry has been held accountable for some of the environmental damage by President Duterte, who threatened to close the island in February if local businesses did not improve the situation. 

Militants attack construction site in Davao del Norte

Militants have reportedly set fire to a construction excavator at a work site in Talaingod, Davao del Norte. The site is located in the Sitio Banualay area of Barangay Palma Gil, where the local police responded to reports of the excavator burning on Wednesday morning. Local witnesses claim seven New People's Army (NPA) militants were responsible for the attack, which has delayed the construction of a new road in the area.

ASG commander surrenders in Basilan

A senior Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) commander has reportedly handed himself in to the Filipino authorities in the Basilan province. According to reports, the commander surrendered along with 12 other ASG militants to the Basilan police forces. The commander has been identified as Nurhassan Jamiri - who was wanted for suspected involvement in several kidnaps and bomb attacks.

Travel warning issued for Mindanao

A travel warning for the Philippines has been issued by the Australian government's travel advise website. The warning reiterates previous advice to reconsider unnecessary travel to eastern Mindanao and to avoid all travel to western Mindanao, where there continues to be a high risk of violent crime, terrorism, and kidnap and ransom.

Police preparing for new Sparu attacks

The police forces have warned that they area anticipating a new surge in so-called 'Sparu' attacks. Such attacks are carried out by the Special Partisan Unit (Sparu)  - an urban hit squad of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group. According to reports, the Filipino security forces suspect the Sparu has been reactivated by the NPA. The president has ordered retired police officers to train younger officers how to fight the hit squad in an orientation programme.

Police kill 13 drug suspects in Bulacan

At least 13 suspected drug dealers have been killed and over 100 others have been arrested in recent anti-drug operations in the Bulacan province. According to Reuters, the police forces carried out around 60 anti-drug operations, targeting nine towns throughout the province. Nineteen firearms were confiscated during the operations, along with at least 250 packets of a variety of illegal narcotics.

Scores killed as bus plunges off a cliff in Sablayan

At least 19 people were killed and more than 25 others injured when a bus crashed in Occidental Mindoro province, southern Phillippines. Authorities revealed that the vehicle plunged off a cliff while driving along a highway near San Agustin, Sablayan. Reports suggest that the bus lost control before crashing. 

NPA rebels surrender in Maguindanao

Ninety-one members of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group have surrendered to police in Maguindanao. Lt. Col. Lauro Oliveros said the agreement was reached following mediation from tribal leaders. Earlier this month the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said more than 2,000 members and supporters of the NPA had surrendered so far this year.

Hotel fire kills three in Manilla

Three people have been killed and 23 others wounded in a hotel fire in the capital, Manilla. Some guests were evacuated from the roof of the  Waterfront Manila Pavilion during the blaze on Sunday. Manila city's disaster risk reduction chief, Johnny Yu, said strong winds were hampering firefighters tackling the fire..

Local official killed in Cebu shooting

A local official has reportedly been killed in a shooting incident in Cebu. Two unidentified gunmen allegedly opened fire on a councillor for San Fernando before escaping on a motorbike. The targeted attack happened near the San Fernando Public Market in the South Poblacion area. The attack is likely to have been politically or personally motivated and police investigations have been launched.

President to withdraw from ICC

The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, has announced plans to withdraw the Philippines from the International Criminal Court (ICC). The announcement comes as the ICC continues to examine information surrounding Duterte's 'war on drugs' in the context of accusations of extrajudicial killings. According to the BBC, Duterte claimed the ICC was being used a 'political tool' in 'baseless' attacks by the UN against the Philippines.

Security operations kill 44 BIFF in Maguindanao

Security operations carried out by the Filipino military have reportedly killed as many as 44 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in the Maguindanao province. According to local reports, the military campaign was launched over the weekend, targeting BIFF militants in remote villages in Datu Saudi Ampatuan. At least 26 militants were also wounded, along with one Filipino soldier.

Six militants killed in Maguindanao clashes

At least six militants from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) group have been killed in clashes with the security forces in Maguindanao area. Armed clashes broke out in Datu Saudi-Ampatuan, during a military operation targeting suspected BIFF camps. No casualties among the security forces have been reported.

Duterte calls for NPA to be classified as terrorist group

President Rodrigo Duterte has reportedly called for the armed wing of the Community Party - the New People's Army (NPA) - to be classified as a terrorist organisation. Duterte abandoned peace talks with the group last year and has launched ongoing security operations ongoing security operations targeted members. The Filipino government allegedly filed an official petition in court targeting around 600 NPA rebels, including UN officials.

Militant killed in Bulacan security operation

A suspected New People's Army (NPA) militant has allegedly been killed in a security operation in Bulacan. The operation targeted the Nabaong Garlang area of San Ildefonso, where the security forces clashes with a group of armed militants, killing one while the others escaped. Several weapons were seized from the site of the clash.

Hostage killed in Sirawai crossfire

A hostage has been killed after a gunfight broke out between a group of kidnappers and the security forces in Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte. Five loggers had allegedly been abducted by a group of armed men on Monday in the forested area of Sirawai. They were being held for ransom; however, a security operation was launched to retrieve the hostages - one of whom was shot dead in the crossfire which broke out shortly before the kidnappers fled. The remaining four hostages were successfully rescued.

One killed in Laguna drug raid

At least one person has been killed in a recent drug raid in Laguna. Local reports suggest the suspect was shot dead whilst resisting arrest during a counter-narcotics operations in the village of San Antonia, on the outskirts of Binan city. Drug raids were also carried out in the Cavite area, with a total of eight suspects being detained. President Duterte has faced international criticism and scrutiny for his violent 'war on drugs', as pending investigations assess claims of systemic extrajudicial killings.

President resists investigation into 'war on drugs'

President Duterte has resisted an investigation into his so-called 'war on drugs' by ordering the Filipino security forces not to cooperate. The Philippines had previously welcomed UN investigations into Duterte's hardline approach to drug crime; however, the recent reports indicate a sudden change in the Philippines' stance.

ASG weapons cache seized in Sulu

A large weapons cache belonging to the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has reportedly been seized during operations in the Sulu province. The cache was uncovered in the Kalingalan Caluang area of Sulu, where the security forces were dispatched after receiving a tip-off regarding militant activity int he area.

Several suspects killed in police operations in Bulacan

At least 10 suspected drug-traffickers have been killed and more than 60 people were detained across dozens of police operations near Manila. The operations happened overnight on Wednesday and focused on the area of Bulacan. Since President Rodrigo Duterte allowed the police to resume its violent anti-drugs campaign, nearly 90 people have been killed and more than 9,000 suspects detained.

Officials request communist organizations to be labelled as terrorist groups

The Department of Justice has requested a regional court in Manila to designate the Communist Party of the Phillippines as a terrorist organisation. Justice officials also called for the same designation to be attributed to the party's armed wing, the New People's Army. This has caused concerns regarding the already stalled talks between the guerrilla groups and the government, which despite significant progress made back in 2016, were suspended a year later. Tensions recently escalated after President Rodrigo Duterte said that female rebels should be shot in the genitals. The New People's Army wages one of Asia's longest insurgencies.

Two killed in police shooting

A police officer and a suspected drug criminals have both been killed in an armed clash with the police forces in Cebu. The altercation took place in the Minglanilla area, where the police had launched an undercover counter-narcotics operation. It's thought the suspect opened fire on the police officers when they attempted to arrest him.

Armed forces deployed in Visayas

The Filipino Armed Forces have reportedly been deployed to the Visayas area as part of the latest counter-terror initiative. Ground troops  will run counter-terror and monitoring operations against insurgents active in the area. Approximately 480 security personnel will be posted to Bohol, Negros, and Panay.

ASG abduct Filipino engineer in Jolo

A Filipino government engineer has been abducted by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in Jolo, Sulu. Enrico Nee was working for the Department of Public Works and Highways in Jolo when he was kidnapped. Local reports suggest the hostage has been taken to Patikul town, where the ASG have a strong presence. The latest abduction raises the number of ASG hostages to at least 10.

One killed in Pangasinan shooting incident

One person has been killed in a shooting incident in the Pangasinan province. The incident happened in the Mangcasuy village of Binalonan town. Reports claim a father opened fire on his son over a personal dispute. The attacker has since been arrested and remains in police custody.

ICC opens inquiry into President's war on drugs

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has launched an inquiry into President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs in the Philippines. According to the BBC, the ICC confirmed the preliminary inquiry on Thursday, stating that reports of extrajudicial killings would be examined. Over the last year, claims have surfaced that the security forces - in the context of President Duterte's war on drugs - killed people for alleged involvement in drugs with little-to-no evidence. The inquiry has been opened alongside another examination investigating the use of excessive force in Venezuela.

Clashes kill three militants in Lanao Del Norte

Three suspected militants have been killed in clashes with the security forces in the Lanao Del Norte province. The security forces reportedly encountered a group of armed militants in the Lumba Punod village of Pantar in the early hours of Thursday morning. A number of firearms and explosives were seized from the site of the clash.

Supreme Court backs martial law extension

A proposal to further extend martial law in Mindanao has been backed by the Filipino Supreme Court. President Duterte suggested an extension of a year in the area, which has been affected by violent militant attacks within the last year. The implementation of martial law in the area is now set to last until the end of the current year.

Over 70,000 evacuated in Albay

Over 70,000 people have been evacuated from their homes in the Albay region amid ongoing volcanic activity. The Mount Mayon volcano has been increasingly active in the last few weeks, prompting widespread evacuations as the local authorities raised the local alert level to level four last week. At least 70,308 people are thought to have been evacuated so far, with little indication as to when the alert level will be lowered, allowing residents to return to their homes.

Two ASG militants surrender

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have reportedly surrendered to the security forces in Basilan. According to reports, the militants voluntarily surrendered their weapons and handed themselves into the Filipino Army in the village of Macalang in the Al-Barka area. ASG militants are active throughout the Basilan and Sulu area, where they have been known to hijack boats and hold crew members for ransom.

Anti-dengue vaccine linked to three deaths

An anti-dengue vaccine called 'Dengvaxia' has been linked to at least three deaths in the Philippines. The vaccine was originally launched in 2016 but was later suspended when it was realised the vaccine may heighten the risk of contracting the fever for those with no prior exposure. Over 800,000 school children had already received the vaccine causing widespread public outrage. According to Reuters, Filipino officials have no confirmed causal association between Dengvaxia and the deaths of three children - two of which may have been caused by vaccine failure.

Two killed in ASG attack

At least two people have been killed and four others have been wounded in an attack carried out by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Pakitul area of Sulu. According to reports, a group of around eight armed ASG militants attacked a private vehicle near Latih village. The Joint Task Force (JTF) and local police force responded to the incident, launching a search operation in pursuit of the attackers.

Kidnappers target teenage girls in Laguna

A group of kidnappers have been targeting young girls in Laguna, with at least three victims reported attempted abductions in the Binan area. According to reports, three girls between the ages of 10 to 15 were targeted in similar incidents near San Francisco Elementary School and San Francisco Bridge in the Southwoods area.  The police have advised girls to avoid walking to school alone and to stay clear of dark passages and narrow streets. The local authorities believe the incidents to be linked and have launched an investigation.

Local government employee killed in Batangas shooting

A local government employee has been killed in a shooting incident in Tanauan city, Batangas. The shooting occurred on Saturday, in the Cambridge subdivision in the Darasa area. The victim has been identified as a 50-year-old employee of Tanauan City Hall. Police investigations have been launched, but no suspects have been identified and it remains unclear whether the victim was targeted because of his employment or a personal vendetta. 

IED blast kills police officer in Davao

A police officer has been killed and two Filipino soldiers have been wounded in an improvised explosive device (IED) blast in Davao city. The explosion occurred in the Mapula village in the Paquibato area of the Calinan district. The security personnel had been dispatched to the area in response to complaints from local residents regarding the presence of New People's Army (NPA) militants in the area. It's believed the IED was planted by NPA militants in an attempt to target the security forces.

Regional counter-terror intelligence sharing intiative agreed

A regional counter-terror intelligence sharing initiative has been agreed between six countries in South East Asia. Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand, and the Philippines have established the 'Our Eyes' initiative with senior defence officials meeting fortnightly to share information regarding militant groups and Islamist threats in the region. 

Four killed in Abra grenade attack

At least four people have been killed and 12 others have been wounded in a grenade attack in the Abra province. The attack happened in the La Paz area, where two unidentified assailants allegedly threw a hand grenade a crowd of people celebrating. According to reports, a local mayor and a congressman were among those wounded, indicating the attack may have been politically motivated.

ASG militant killed in Basilan firefight

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has been killed in a firefight with the security forces in the Basilan province. The gunfight broke out when ASG militants opened fire on security personnel in the Sungkayot village of the Ungkaya Pukan area. The security forces had launched an operation in the area after receiving reports of militant activity. 

Volcanic eruption causes flight disruption

The ongoing volcanic eruption of Mount Mayon in the Bicol region has caused widespread flight disruption as Ninoy Aquino International Airport is forced to cancel flight services. The volcanic activity escalated on Monday, when the mountain started spewing hot lava from its crater, prompting the local authorities to elevate warnings to a level four. According to reports, over 56,000 people have been evacuated from the surrounding areas. The Australian government's travel advise website has advised travellers of flight cancellations at Ninoy Aquino airport in Manila, and suspended flight services at Legazpi Airport in Albay, due to the thick ash and smoke being emitted by the volcano.

Two ASG hostages released

Two Indonesian fishermen who were kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in November 2016 have been released. The hostages, La Hadi bin La Adi and La Utu bin Raali, were originally abducted whilst sailing off the coast of Sabah, Malaysia. Reports confirm the pair were released in Sulu over the weekend, after being held for over a year. They were handed over to the Joint Task Force base and have been flown to Zamboanga to be repatriated.

Two soldiers killed in Kalinga clash

Two Filipino soldiers have killed and two others have been wounded after the security forces clashed with New People's Army (NPA) militants in the Kalinga province. The security forces had been deployed to the Pinukpuk area after receiving reports of extortion. When they encountered the NPA militants in the village of Baay a gunfight broke out. 

Militant infighting ongoing in Maguindanao

Infighting between factions of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) militant group has killed at least two people and wounded six others after breaking out in the Datu Saudi Ampatuan area of Maguindanao over the weekend. The fighting reportedly broke out on Saturday and has remained ongoing ever since, forcing over 2,500 families to evacuate the surrounding villages. Local reports suggest the government forces have no plans to respond to the fighting; however, the local government has prepared measures to prevent the further escalation of fighting in the area

Exclusion zone extended around Mt Mayon

The local authorities in the Bicol region have extended the exclusion zone to eight kilometres as the volcanic activity escalates at Mount Mayon in Albay. According to the BBC, the level three alert was also escalated to a level four on Monday morning, as experts warn of a hazardous and violent eruption within the next few days. All schools have been shut and residents have been encouraged to stay inside due to the thick smoke being given off by the volcano. Around 40,000 people have already been evacuated and further evacuations have been planned once more emergency funds have been made available.

Twin blasts hit Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao

Twin blasts have struck near a highway in the town of Datu Odin Sinsuat in the Maguindanao province. The first blast occurred along the side of the main highway near the Semba area on Friday morning. This blast was then followed by another explosion just metres away 10 minutes later. While no casualties were incurred, some minor infrastructural damage was caused and the police have launched investigations. It's currently suspected that members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant outfit may have been responsible.

Ten children wounded in Sulu grenade blast

Ten children have been wounded in a grenade blast in the Sulu province. The incident occurred in the Kanaway village of the Parang area, where a group of children were allegedly playing in a field when they came across an unexploded grenade. Thinking it was a toy, the children reportedly began to play with the grenade, triggering an explosion. It's believed the grenade was originally fired from a grenade launched but failed to detonate on impact.

Four killed in Muntinlupa prison shootout

At least four people have been killed after a shootout broke out in a prison on the outskirts of Muntinlupa City of Metro Manila. According to the Manila Times, a group of unidentified gunmen stormed the prison, located in the Tunasan area, sparking a fatal gunfight with prison personnel. At least two prison staff were killed, along with two armed suspects. At least one other suspect was thought to be present during the attack and the local police forces have made arrests in connection with the case. While the precise motive behind the incident remains unclear, it's suspected the attackers may have been attempting to free an imprisoned associate.

Around 40,000 evacuated as Mt Mayon erupts

Almost 40,000 people have been evacuated from areas surrounding Mount Mayon in the Bicol region of the Albay province. The volcano has been emitting thick clouds of smoke and ash and recently began spewing lava - prompting the local authorities to establish a seven-kilometre danger zone around the base of the volcano. A level three warning has been issued, which will be raised to a level four warning if the volcanic activity escalates into a full-scale eruption - forcing even more evacuations. The local authorities have requested aid assistance from the national government, as local resources will not cover the food and water needs of all the evacuees. The British FCO has issued foreign travel advise to warn of potential flight disruption throughout the area.

Four NPA militants killed in Lupon clash

Four suspected militants of the New Peoples Army (NPA) rebel group have been killed in an armed encounter in Lupon, Davao Oriental province. The clash broke out in the Marayag village, where the Filipino security forces were deployed to investigate reports of militant activity. A group of armed militants allegedly opened fire on the security forces, leading to a brief firefight in which four NPA rebels were killed. 

Sixteen killed rain-related incidents

At least 16 people have been killed in adverse weather conditions as heavy rainfall hits parts of the Philippines. The wet weather has caused several landslides and has heightened the risk of flooding across the southern provinces. Fatal rain-related incidents have been reported in Camrines Norde, Camarines Sur, Compestela Valley, Lanao del Norte, Northern Samar, and Tacloban city. The local authorities have reminded residents to avoid unnecessary travel and to be prepared for evacuations whilst monitoring local news updates for further advice. 

Four killed in passenger bus collision

At least four people have been killed after a passenger bus collided with a van in Palawan. The Manila Times has reported that the accident occurred in Puerto Princesa on Friday morning. The Regional Police Office in Mimaropa allegedly confirmed the fatalities, along with at least 10 other casualties. The cause of the accident remains unclear; however, reckless driving is a possible factor. The poor condition of roads and public vehicles are another main cause of fatal traffic accidents.

Five drug suspects killed in Bulacan

Five suspected drug criminals have reportedly been killed in recent counter-narcotics operations in the Bulacan province. The operations were launched by the local law enforcement, targeting suspected drug-traffickers and criminal networks involved in drug crime. Th recent drug raid comes amid a general increase in counter-narcotic operations targeting drug syndicates nationwide.

Soldier killed in roadside bombing

A Filipino soldier has been killed in a roadside bombing in Mindanao. The blast occurred on the Decalungan Bridge in the Datu Hoffer area, where an improvised explosive device (IED) had reportedly been planted by suspected Islamic State (IS) militants. It's thought the IS militants were targeting a military unit which was passing by at the time the IED exploded. At least three civilians also sustained injuries in the blast.

Gunman killed in Ipil police clash

A gunman has been killed after clashing with the police in Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay. According to local reports, the clash broke out after an armed suspect opened fire on police officers in the village of Makilas, leading to a fatal firefight with the police. While two police officers were wounded, the suspect was shot dead. At least one hand grenade was recovered from the scene following the brief gunfight and is presumed to have belonged to the suspect. It remains unclear whether or not the police officers were carrying out an operation when the encounter occurred. Investigations have been launched to assess any potential links the suspect may have had to militant groups.

Heightened security measures in Manila

Heightened security measures are set to be installed across Metro Manila ahead of the Feast of the Black Nazarene. Over 5,000 police officers are to be deployed throughout the city and a gun ban will be imposed from Monday 08 January, lasting until Wednesday 10 January. An alcohol ban is also likely to come into effect and a signal jamming may also be considered. A no-fly zone has also been established above Metro Manila for the duration of the feast, preventing all aircraft and drones from entering the airspace. Road closures may cause travel disruption in the central area and motorists have been advised to plan alternate routes.

Six killed in Zamboanga bomb explosion

Six people have been killed and seven others have been wounded in a bomb explosion in a plywood factory in Zamboanga del Norte. According to local reports, the blast took place in a facility belonging to the Sirawai Plywood Lumber Corporation, where a group of workers accidentally triggered a mortar bomb. It's believed the workers found the bomb in Sirawai and were fiddling with the explosive device at the factory when it was detonated. The precise origin of the bomb remains unclear; however, rebel militant groups are active in the region and have been known to use such bombs.

Four robbers storm hotel in Pasay

Four armed robbers have attacked a hotel in Pasay City, robbing several guests. One victim had $15k in cash and jewellery worth $45k stolen during the raid on the Mabuhay Manor Hotel. The assailants fled before the security forces arrived on the scene.

Four dead after ferry capsizes off east coast

Four people have been killed and seven others are missing after a ferry carrying 251 people capsized off the east coast of the Philippines. More than 200 people were rescued by the authorities and local fishermen, according to the coastguard. The vessel was caught in stormy seas as it travelled to the island of Polillo in Quezon province.

Landslides kill 26 in Biliran, eastern Philippines

At least 26 people have been killed in landslides on the island of Biliran in the eastern Philippines. A further 23 people are also missing after the area was battered by Tropical Storm Kai-tak over the weekend. More than 80,000 people were forced to leave the area ahead of the storm, while 15,000 travellers were stranded when ferry services were cancelled. Rescue operations are underway to locate any survivors.

Police officers kills soldier in shooting incident

A police officer has killed a Filipino soldier and wounded three others in a shooting incident in Zamboanga Sibugay. Local reports indicate the police officer got involved in an altercation with a group of Filipino soldiers in the Planet Disco House venue in the village of Don Andres in Ipil town, Zamboanga Sibugay. One of the soldiers was shot dead, while two other soldiers and a civilian passer-by were also wounded. Police investigations into the incident have been launched and remain ongoing.

Hundreds evacuate amid floods in Misamis Oriental

Hundreds of people have been forced to evacuate their homes after flooding and landslides hit the Misamis Oriental province. Widespread flash floods have been caused by several days of continuous heavy rainfall brought to the region by Tropical Depression Urduja - currently over the Philippine Sea and expected to make landfall on the island of Samar over the weekend. Approximately 900 people have been evacuated thus far as the risk of landslides also heightens across the province. Lagonglong and Balingasag have been identified among some of the worst affected areas and the local authorities have advised residents to prepare themselves for further evacuations.

Militants kill two people in Quezon

A group of armed New People's Army (NPA) militants have reportedly killed two people in Quezon city. According to reports, a shooting broke out in the San Francisco area of Quezon, where suspected NPA militants allegedly opened fire on the victims in Sitio Hacienda. The local security forces have launched a search operation in pursuit of the gunmen.

President Duterte extends martial law on Mindanao island

President Rodrigo Duterte has extended martial law on the southern island of Mindanao by another year, following recommendations from the Filipino army. The motion has been approved by the Filipino congress and is set to last until Monday 31 December 2018. The president backed concerns expressed by military officials that, without martial law, it would become increasingly difficult to tackle the persistent issue of Islamist militancy on the southern island. Despite heavy losses in the fighting in Marawi, Islamist militant groups are allegedly still actively recruiting members.

Suspected criminal killed in police operation

 A suspected criminal has been killed in a police operation in the Payatas area of Quezon City, National Capital Region. The local police forces were carrying out a surveillance operation when they encountered a number of armed criminals. The suspects reportedly opened fire on the police, injuring one police officer, before attempting to flee. One of the suspects was shot dead by the police and search operations have been launched in pursuit of the other criminals.

Two killed in Cotabato gun attack

Two people have been killed and another has been wounded in a gun attack in Cotabato. According to reports, unidentified gunmen allegedly ambushed the victims in the Matalam area. The attackers then stole the victims' motorbike and managed to escape. No suspects have been identified thus far, while police investigations have been launched to determine the motive behind the attack.

Dozens of Marawi evacuees die in relief centres

Dozens of evacuees from Marawi city have allegedly died in relief centres within the last five months. Reports suggest that as many as 86 evacuees have died in evacuation centres since Marawi fell under siege by Islamist militants in late-May. The Department of Health has confirmed the fatality figures, stating that most of the causes of death were put down to health ailments, such as pneumonia, sepsis, cardiovascular disease, and acute gastroenteritis. Almost 368,000 people were evacuated from Marawi, with around 107,000 having already returned home since the liberation of the city in October.

Filipino military recommends martial law extension

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has released a report recommending an extension of martial law on the southern island of Mindanao. AFP officials reportedly made the recommendation to President Rodrigo Duterte, advising that an extension of another year of martial law would assist military counter-terror operations in the area. The security situation in Mindanao has remained unstable since Islamist militants carried out a five-month siege on the city of Marawi. Government forces hope to continue clearing operations throughout the island, stating that martial law is essential to this process as - despite their losses in Marawi - militant groups have continued to recruit members.

One killed in armed militant encounter

At least one person has been killed and a 13-year-old boy has been wounded in an armed encounter in the Oriental Mindoro province over the weekend. Security personnel reportedly clashed with suspected militants from the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group in the town of Mansalay. While the government forces stated the deceased was an NPA militant, local reports have disputed this, claiming the victim was a local pastor. 

Six killed in clashes between troops and NPA

At least six people have been killed in clashes between government troops and the New People's Army (NPA) in South Cotabato province. The fighting took place in the town of Lake Sebu on Sunday, according to a military spokesman. Earlier four police were wounded when NPA militants attacked a police station in Cagayan de Oro, around 250km north of Lake Sebu.

Four police wounded in NPA clashes

Four police officers have been wounded in clashes with New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Cagayan de Oro city. Around 60 gunmen attacked a police station in the Binuangan area early on Sunday morning. All they wanted to do is to sow fear to advance their terroristic activities that are aimed to make people suffer,” said Maj. Gen. Ronald Villanueva, commander of the 4th Infantry Division.

Robbers target container ship off Manila

During routine security rounds, crew onboard an anchored container ship noticed the securing cables for the forward lifesaving appliances cut and the liferafts and immersion suites missing. On inspecting the area, it was noticed that the robbers had boarded the vessel via the anchor chain and hawse pipe. VTS Manila and the coast guard carried out a security search around the vessel. (IMB)

Soldier wounded in NPA clash

A soldier has been wounded in an armed clash with suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels in the Abra province. The Filipino military forces were allegedly on a routine security patrol in the Ud-udiao area of Sallapadan, when they encountered a number of suspected NPA militants armed with weapons. A brief clash ensued in which one of the soldier was wounded while the militants managed to escape.

Villagers flee from suspected NPA attack in Lianga

Dozens of villagers have been forced to flee from their houses after gunmen allegedly stormed their village in Surigao del Sur province. Suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group reportedly attacked the village of Simuwao in the Diatagon area of Lianga. It remains unclear precisely how many villagers have fled; however, no casualties have been reported as the security forces launch counter-operations.

Abducted Korean businessman rescued in Manila

An abducted Korean businessman has been rescued by the Philipino National Police (PNP) forces in Manila. The operation was led by the PNP's Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG) - who launched an investigation into a suspected kidnap and ransom group with links to the Bureau of Immigration (BI) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). According to reports, a group of kidnappers abducted Korean businessman Lee Jung Dae and three of his employees on Friday, Lee's girlfriend reportedly secured the release of the three employees by paying a ransom of 1.2 million pesos. A further ransom of another 1.2 million pesos (around $23,800; £17,900) was demanded in exchange for the release of Lee; however, the AKG operation managed to rescue to the hostage from a guarded vehicle inside a BI compound on Saturday morning. Three Korean nationals and a Filipino national have been arrested thus far and a further six suspects have been identified: three BI employees and three NBI agents. Police operations remain ongoing and an investigation into corruption will be launched.

Fire engulfs Davao city suburb

A large fire has engulfed much of the Sasa suburban area of Davao city. The blaze is thought to have broken out in a public market on Friday morning. Buildings in the area are tightly packed, enabling the fire to spread rapidly. According to local reports, firefighting crews have been dispatched to tackle the fire. Dozens of houses have sustained damage as a result of the fire and hundreds of people have been evacuated from the area. The blaze has filled the air with thick black smoke; however, flight operations are thought to remain unaffected. The cause of the fire remains unclear and no casualties have been reported as of yet.

Village chairman killed in Cebu shooting

A village chairman has been killed and his wife has been wounded in a shooting incident in the Liloan area of the Cebu province. The attack occurred on Thursday evening when at least two unidentified gunmen on motorcycles allegedly ambushed the victim's car on his way home in the Simborio area of Tayud, Liloan.  Police investigations have been launched along with search operations in pursuit of the gunmen who managed to flee following the incident. It's currently believed the attack was motivated by either drug crime or a personal dispute.

Man killed in militant attack, Nueva Ecija

A man has been killed and a police officer has been wounded in a militant attack in the Nueva Ecija province. The attack took place at a construction site in the Masagana area of Putlan village in Carranglan, Nueva Ecija. According to reports, a group of armed militants targeted the construction site in the early hours of Wednesday morning, killing the site caretaker before opening fire on the police forces. It's believed the militants were members of the New Peoples Army (NPA) rebel group.

Five ASG hostages rescued in Tawi-Tawi

Five hostages being held by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) - an Islamist kidnap for ransom militant group - have been rescued by Filipino government troop in Tawi-Tawi, Mindanao. The rescue mission was launched as part of ongoing security operations against the ASG in the area. The hostages were originally kidnapped by ASG militants a little over a month ago in the waters near Pangutaran, Sulu. According to reports, the rescue mission exploited a rare lapse in security on the militants' side.

Government forces target militants in Mindanao

The Filipino government forces have launched air and ground operations against Islamic State (IS) militants operating in the southern island of Mindanao. Filipino air forces and artillery units have launched strikes against IS-affiliated Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighter (BIFF) across the island. The Cotobato and Maguindanao areas have been prioritised as key targets in the new offensive, which aims to clear both areas of BIFF militants. 

Abu Sayyaf Group kidnap six villagers in Sulu

Militants from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have taken six villagers hostage from Latih in Patikul, Sulu. According to reports, the militants stormed the village on Tuesday, abducting at least six local residents - including at least one child. The Filipino security forces have launched full search and rescue operations, while no ransom demands have been made by the ASG as of yet.

Militants kidnap two police officers in Surigao del Norte

Two Filipino police officers have been kidnapped by suspected militants from the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group. According to reports, a group of around 20 armed NPA militants were driving two stolen vans when they attacked the police officers manning a police outpost in the town of Placer in the Surigao del Norte province. Search operations have been launched in pursuit of the militants. While the two vans have been recovered, it remains unclear where the militants have taken the hostages. The NPA have made no comment regarding the abductions and no ransom demands have been made. 

Three NPA militants killed in Capiz clashes

Three members of the New People's Army (NPA) militant group have been killed in clashes with the Filipino Armed Forces in the Capiz area. The Filipino troops were reportedly dispatched to the Cuartero area in response to reports of NPA militants carrying out acts of extortion. The fighting broke out when the armed militants allegedly opened fire on the security personnel, leading to a firefight in which three militants were killed and several weapons were seized.

New regional IS leader announced

Militant groups affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) have reportedly announced a new leader of operations for the IS in South-East Asia. The announcement comes shortly after two major regional IS leaders were killed by the Filipino security forces in military operations to liberate Marawi city from militant siege. The new leader - Malaysian national, Amin Baco - was not reported to have been killed in Marawi city and is believed to be in hiding in the southern Mindanao region. According to reports, Baco is also thought to be an experienced bomb-maker and may have been instrumental in many recent bomb attacks carried out by IS-affiliated militant groups.

Travel warnings issued for the Philippines

The Australian government's travel advice website has issued a travel advisory warning against all travel to certain parts of the Philippines due to a high risk of terrorist attack. The warnings recommend that all foreign nationals avoid travel to the central and western parts of Mindanao, including the Zamboanga Peninsula, the Sulu Archipelago, and the southern Sulu Sea area. Islamist militant and kidnap and ransom groups such as the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) operate in the southern islands and often target foreign nationals.

One killed in Bicol landslide

At least one person has been killed and another has been wounded in a landslide in Bicol. Wet weather caused the landslide to occur in Sagnay, Camarines Sur, hitting a local residents house. Several days of heavy rain have heightened the risk of landslides across the region, with at least five other landslides reported throughout the Bicol area.

Severe weather kills two in Batangas

At least two people have been killed in rain-related incidents after severely wet weather hit the Batangas province. According to reports, the fatalities were caused by a landslide which occurred due to heavy rain in the Kota Keluarga area of San Juan, Batangas. As many as three others were also wounded in the incident. There continues to be a heightened risk of localised flooding and landslides in the area as the wet weather continues.

Final military operation kills 40 IS in Marawi

The final military operation to be conducted in Marawi city has reportedly killed around 40 Islamic State (IS) militants - believed to be the last militants remaining in the city. The operation marks an end to a five-month-long siege launched by the IS-affiliated Maute group with support from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). According to Reuters, at least 40 IS militants and two of their wives were killed in the final push to free Marawi from Islamist militants over the weekend. While President Duterte had declared the liberation of the city last week, offensive combat operations were only terminated yesterday, after the last militants were killed in the heart of the city. Reports suggest that gunfire has continued to be heard in the city and there remains a high risk of militant activity in the area.

Twenty IS militants killed in Marawi city

At least 20 Islamist militants have allegedly been killed in military operations in Marawi city. According to Reuters, the Filipino troops have been pushing the last remaining groups loyal to the Islamic State (IS) out of Marawi. It's believed that one of the militants killed could be a top Malaysian IS leader, Mahmud Ahmad, who was has become a key IS figure in South East Asia recently. Formal identification is yet to take place; however, if confirmed, the death of Mahmud could mark a significant set back for the IS. The latest operation comes as part of the final push to rid the city of the few IS militants remaining. President Duterte declared the liberation of the city earlier this week after key leaders of the two IS-loyalist groups behind the siege - the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and the Maute group - were killed in military operations.

Farming group claims 80 farmers killed in extrajudicial killings

The Coalition for Land, Against Martial Law and Oppression (CLAMOR) has accused government-supported troops of direct involvement in the extrajudicial killings of around 80 farmers within the last three months. The group stands for free land distribution and against extrajudicial killings and the implementation of martial law in Mindanao.CLAMOR representatives claimed that government troops, paramilitary forces, and private security forces had been involved in the unlawful killings - which were disguised as anti-drug operations carried out under President Duterte's 'war on drugs'. Government officials have not publically responded to the claims.

President Duterte declares liberation of Marawi city

The Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte has declared the liberation of Marawi city - which came under militant siege almost five months ago. The president made the announcement to the Filipino troops in Marawi as the last bit of fighting continued. According to the BBC, up to 30 Islamist Maute group militants remain in the city, holding as many as 20 hostages. The killing of two senior leaders of the Maute group and the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) yesterday has made way for the government troops to make the last push  to force the remaining militants from the city. During the five-month-long siege, over 800 militants and over 150 security personnel have been killed, along with almost 50 civilians. Once the city is entirely freed of militants, the troops allegedly plan to focus on eliminating the ASG in Sulu and Basilan, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Central Mindanao, and the New People's Army (NPA) in the Eastern Mindanao, Bacolod, and Samar areas.

Two senior Islamist group leaders killed in Marawi

Two senior leaders of Islamist militant groups have reportedly been killed in Marawi city. News reports claim the Filipino troops have killed two of the top leaders behind the five-month-long siege on Marawi city: Isnilon Hapilon - a senior leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Basilan and the purported emir of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Southeast Asia - and Omar Maute - one of the founding leaders of the Maute group. The deaths were confirmed by the Defence Chief, who stated in a press conference that Hapilon and Maute had both been killed in a major offensive in Marawi on Monday morning. A former hostage of the Maute group helped the security forces launch an intelligence-led operation to locate the two leaders. As many as 17 other hostages were also freed in the process. Up to 20 hostages remain in captivity and the Filipino military continues to work towards the freeing of these hostages and the termination of the conflict.

Two NPA militants killed in Cotabato shootout

Two militants - believed to be members of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group - have been killed in a shootout with the Filipino security forces in Cotabato. The encounter occurred on Saturday, during an army operation in the Makilala area of Cotabato. According to reports, the Filipino troops came across a group of armed NPA militants, who opened fire on the security forces, prompting a fatal shootout in which two militants died.

High risk of kidnap in Malaysia-Filipino waters

There is a higher-than-normal risk of kidnap by militant groups in the waters surrounding the Sabah province of Malaysia and the Filipino Tawitawi islands. The Filipino intelligence services have reportedly received information indicating that the militant Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) plans to target South Korean nationals in a series of abductions planned in the areas. It remains unclear whether the group will hijack South Korean vessels or target South Korean nationals staying in the areas. According to reports, the ASG have acquired at least one speed-boat and are currently basing themselves in the Parang area of Sulu to launch attacks over the next few days. Foreign travellers should take extreme caution in the area - particularly if sailing through coastal waters.

President Duterte removes police from drug operations

The Filipino President has reportedly removed the country's police force from leader anti-drug operations. President Duterte's controversial 'war on drugs' has sparked widespread criticism and the police claim they have killed over 3,850 people in anti-drug operations since Duterte came into power last year. However, following a series of allegations of corruption, the police have been demoted from their leading role in the crackdown on drugs. The police forces were previously suspended from conducting anti-drug operation in January 2017, after corrupt police officers kidnapped and killed a South Korean businessman. According to the BBC, the Filipino Drug Enforcement Agency has been positioned to take over the leading of anti-drug operations. The brutal crackdown has led to multiple public demonstrations and the restructuring of operations is partially a response to public anger towards police corruption.

Two killed in Bulacan drug raid

At least two suspects have been killed in a drug raid in the Calumpit area of Bulacan. The Filipino police targeted the suspects in a property raid in the Gatbuca village; however, the suspects allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police forces - leading to a fatal exchange of fire. A small supply of drugs and other drug-related material was discovered in the drug den and local reports suggested an increasing number of people had been buying from the den in recent weeks.

Four wounded in Cauayan militant attack

At least four people have been wounded in a militant attack in the town of Cauayan in the Negros Occidental province. The New People's Army (NPA) militant group reportedly launched an attack targeting five police officers in Cauayan on Tuesday - leading to an exchange of fire in which at least one NPA militant and three civilians were wounded. Two Swedish nationals and a Filipino national were among those wounded and have been taken to the local hospital for treatment.

Airstrikes target militants on Bacolod-Kalawi

The Filipino military has conducted airstrikes targeting militants on Bacolod-Kalawi - a lakeside town near Marawi city, where the government has been battling Islamist Maute group militants for the last few months. According to reports, the airstrikes hit a suspected militant hideout in Bacolod-Kalawi in Lanao del Sur, where it's believed a militant group was organising support operations to assist the remaining militant force holding a position in Marawi. While no casualty figures have been reported, military officials have confirmed the airstrikes and stated that military operations were ongoing in the area, where naval assets have been deployed to prevent the militants sending reinforcements to Marawi using boats.

Four wounded in twin IED blast in Maguindanao

Four people have been wounded in a twin bomb explosion in the Maguindanao province. The blasts occurred in the Semba area of Datu Odin Sinsuat and are thought to have been caused by two improvised explosive devices (IEDs). It's suspected the IEDs were planted along the roadside in an attempt to target Filipino military troops, as the location of the blast was near a military training school. The first IED detonated on Wednesday morning with no casualties; however, the second blast occurred nearby just 20 minutes later and wounded at least four people. It's possible the second explosion was time-delayed in order to target a response team; however, no details have been confirmed as investigations remain ongoing.

Police officer killed in shooting incident in Manila

A police officer has been killed in a shooting incident near the Presidential Palace in Manila. The officer was a member of the Presidential Security Group and was found with a fatal gunshot wound to the chest in Malacanang Park opposite Malacanang Palace, which houses the Bahay Pangarap - the official residence of Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte. According to reports, the officer suffered a gunshot wound in the heart from a 45 calibre pistol similar to those used by the police force. Investigations have been launched and the latest statements released by security personnel suggest that foul play has been ruled out and the investigative team are now considering the possibility the incident was an accident or suicide.

Security forces foil terror plot in Zamboanga city

The Filipino security forces have reportedly foiled an attempted terror plot in Zamboanga city. According to reports, the security forces launched an arrest operation in Zamboanga on Sunday, arresting three suspects with an improvised explosive device (IED). The suspects are believed to be members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant group and were allegedly planning to conduct a bomb attack in the city within the next few days. The local police and security forces have now launched an intelligence-led search operation to more IEDs linked to the bomb plot.

Police officer killed in Cagayan gun attack

A Filipino police officer has been killed in a targeted gun attack in the Cagayan province. The attack occurred in Alcala town, where the police officer was allegedly followed by two men aboard a motorbike when he left his house for work on his own motorbike. According to reports, the victim was discovered with multiple gunshot wounds to his upper body. The police have launched investigations into whether or not the attack was linked to police work.

Suspected militant killed in police gunfight

A suspected militant has allegedly been killed in a brief gunfight with the police in the town of Naga in the Zamboanga Sibugay province. The local police forces reportedly launched a search operation after they received reports of a group of armed men active in the Sitio Panjang area. The police officers encountered a group of seven armed men, who allegedly opened fire, sparking a 10-minute firefight in which one suspect was killed. The deceased suspect has been identified as a member of the Abdusalam Group - a militant group associated with the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).

Nine NPA rebels killed in Nueva Ecija clash

At least nine suspected members of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) militant groups have reportedly been killed in a clash with the Filipino security forces in Nueva Ecija, Central Luzon. The clash occurred in the Carranglan area, where the security forces had been undertaking an intelligence-led security operation when they encountered a group of armed NPA rebels. The Manila Times has reported that the militants opened fire on the security forces, sparking a three-hour gunfight which killed nine NPA militants and wounded one Filipino soldier.

Reports of new armed group in Marawi

Reports have surfaced of the emergence of a new armed group in the Marawi area. The group has named itself the Meranaw Victims Movement (MVM) and claims to be anti-militant and anti-government. According to news reports, the MVM is comprised of evacuees from the city of Marawi - which was overrun by Maute group militants earlier this year. The MVM has released a statement condemning the Islamist militant groups involved in the siege and also criticised the government, holding the authorities responsible for failing to prevent the attack which forced thousands to flee their homes. The group has threatened violent action if a list of demands is not met - some of which include the vacating of Marawi by Islamist militants and the return of the town to civilians by the government.

Two killed in Rizal landslide

Two people have been killed in a landslide in the Rizal province. The landslide occurred in the early hours of Tuesday morning and was caused by a recent bout of heavy rain in the region. At least two houses were hit by the landslide in a village near Taytay city. According to reports, residents in the area had been warned of the high-risk of a landslide and evacuations were advised.

Two ASG hostages rescued in Jolo clash

Two Indonesian hostages being held by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been rescued, while at least five ASG militants have been killed and five others have been wounded in a recent clash with the Filipino security forces on Jolo Island, Mindanao. According to reports, a gunfight broke out in an ASG hideout in the town of Indanan, where the security forces allegedly engaged with approximately 20 armed ASG militants. Two Indonesian nationals being held by the ASG were rescued during the incident. It's thought they had been held in captivity since November 2016. The ASG is believed to be holding as many as 18 other hostages.

ASG militant arrested in Sulu province

A militant of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has been arrested after being found in possession of bomb-making equipment in the Sulu province. According to reports, the suspect was apprehended by military personnel at a check post in the town of Patikul. It's believed the militant was en route to meet other ASG militants and was transporting several components to be used in the manufacturing of an improvised explosive device (IED). The bomb-making materials were seized by the security forces and the suspect remains in custody.

Thousands evacuated as fire breaks out in Manila tower block

Thousands of people have been evacuated from a residential tower block in Manila after a fire broke out on Thursday morning. According to reports, the blaze started on the eighth floor of the 12-storey building, forcing around 5,000 residents to immediately evacuate. Fire fighters and the emergency services have responded to the incident and several roads surrounding the building have been closed, including all roads leading to the Plaza San Lorenzo Ruiz, Recto Avenue, and Alvarado Street - where the building is located. It's thought the fire was started by an unattended stove and has since spread rapidly, engulfing several other floors. At least one person is thought to have been killed; however, no other casualty figures have been reported so far. Investigations into fire safety standards and building regulations have been launched.

Ten BIFF militants killed in military operations

At least 10 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militants have been killed in recent military operations launched in Maguindanao. The operation was carried out by air and ground troops, assisted by the government-supported Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces - Moro Islamic Liberation Front (BIAF-MILF) militia. According to reports, at least two BIAF-MILF fighters were killed and an unconfirmed number were also wounded during the operation.

Three soldiers killed, 52 wounded in Marawi clashes

Three Filipino soldiers have been killed and as many as 52 others have been wounded in clashes with Islamist militants in Marawi city. CNN Philippines has reported that the three deceased soldiers were killed in explosions caused by improvised explosive device (IED) laid by the Islamist Maute group militants before they retreated from parts of Marawi. Five militants and 52 soldiers were wounded in fighting as the security forces battled against the militants to seize control of the Banggolo bridge. It's believed the militant group has been forced to retreat to a 0.5km square area as the siege nears its end. Approximately 40 militants are thought to remain in the city, while at least 620 have been killed since fighting broke out in May. Around 136 soldiers have also been killed, along with at least 45 civilians.

Four drug suspects killed in counter-drug operations

Four suspected drug-traffickers have been killed and at least 10 others have been arrested in separate counter-drug operations. The Filipino police forces targeted four suspected drug offenders in an arrest operation in Metro Manila; however, a fatal gunfight allegedly broke out after the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police. Ten more drug suspects were arrested in Caloocan city during a separate drug raid. Both operations were launched as part of a police crackdown on the illegal drug trade. 

Security forces recapture Marawi city mosques from militants

The Filipino security forces have recently recaptured several mosques from Islamic State (IS) militants in Marawi city. The IS-affiliated Maute group launched a siege on the city in May 2017 and have since been battling the security forces for control of the city. The government military has been undertaking a gradual clearing operation in the area to reclaim the city. The operation has been slow as the security forces wish to minimise casualties and believe the militants still hold civilian hostages; however, clearing operations have been effective as the militants have gradually lost more territory. According to reports, it's suspected the militants had been using the mosques as operational camps and supply bases. The militants allegedly retreated from the mosques under heavy pressure from the Filipino military.

Ten MILF killed in clash with IS militants in Maguindanao

At least 10 members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have been killed in an armed clash with Islamic State (IS) militants in Maguindanao. The clash broke out in remote forested areas near the farmlands of Datu Salibo, where the MILF have allegedly been assisting government counter-terror operations against IS-loyalist groups. The operations aim to prevent IS-affiliated terror cells from establishing any operational bases in the Mindanao area.

Two killed in earthquake in Leyte province

At least two people have been killed in an earthquake in the Leyte province. The US Geological Survey (USGS) has recorded that a 5.0-magnitude earthquake occurred at approximately 22:26 UTC, about eight kilometres north-north-east of Talisayan. The earthquake had a shallow epicentre at just 10km deep - meaning that the tremors were widely felt. According to reports, one person was killed in the San Jose area, while another was killed in the Naungan area. Approximately 56 houses have also been seriously damaged in Ormoc City, where investigations into the extent of the infrastructural damage are ongoing.

ASG hostage rescued in military operations

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) hostage has been rescued by the Filipino security forces during military operations in the Basilan province. A Vietnamese national who had been abducted by ASG militants nine months ago was safely retrieved from Mataja Island after the security forces launched a rescue operation. According to reports, the ASG militants fled the scene shortly after the operation was launched. The hostage was kidnapped with five other Vietnamese crewmen off the coast of Coco Island in November 2016. Of the six Vietnamese nationals abducted, at least three have been killed, two have been rescued while one is thought to still be in captivity.

Nine killed in ASG attack on Basilan island

At least nine people have been killed and 10 others have been wounded after armed Islamist militants from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) attacked a town on Basilan island. Approximately 60 heavily armed ASG militants stormed the town of Maluso in the Mindanao region, burning at least four houses and a day care centre as dozens of armed militants opened fire. The Filipino security forces responded to the attack, launching pursuit operations as the militants fled.

Village chief killed in shooting incident, Negros Oriental

A Filipino village chief has been killed and two others have been wounded in a shooting incident in the City of Guihulngan in the Negros Oriental province, Central Visayas. Unidentified gunmen allegedly opened fire on the village chief and his companions in a seemingly targeted attack. While no group has claimed responsibility for the killing as of yet, local police suspect that rebels of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) militant group were behind the attack - as they have been increasingly active in the surrounding area.

Wounded NPA militant surrenders in Sarangani

A wounded militant from the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebel group has allegedly surrendered himself to the government forces in the Sarangani province. It's believed the militant was injured several days ago during a clash between the Filipino security forces and the NPA rebels in Malita; however, decided to surrender to the government forces after his comrades abandoned him. The security forces have launched intense military operations in the mountainous Alabel and Malapatan areas recently, where there has been an increase in violent NPA activity.

Outbreaks of bird flu reported in Nueva Ecija

New outbreaks of the bird flu virus have been reported in the Nueva Ecija province. Local officials have confirmed that the recent spread of the disease has largely affected the San Isidro and Jaen areas. The outbreak comes just a few days after another outbreak was reported from the San Luis area of the Pampanga province. The Bureau of Animal Industry has launched investigations to test chickens on two farms from which the disease may have originated. If the poultry tests positive for bird flu the local authorities are likely to issue a culling in order to prevent the further spread of the disease.

Twenty-five killed in police drug raids, Manila

At least 25 people have allegedly been killed in shootouts with the police during a series of drug raids in Manila. The Filipino police conducted a series of overnight anti-drug operations across the capital city. According to reports, the aggressive operation was part of President Duterte's controversial war on drugs which has been ongoing since Duterte became president last year. The raid came just one day after a similar police operation killed 32 drug suspects in the neighbouring Bulacan province - the highest singular death toll reported so far under Duterte's war on drugs.

Militant bomb maker killed in arrest operation, Mindanao

A militant bomb maker - believed to have been associated with the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group - has been killed in arrest operation in Mindanao. The security forces allegedly apprehended the suspect late last night in Datu Odin Sinsuat town; however, the suspect allegedly resisted arrest, opening fire on the security personnel - starting a fatal shootout. According to reports, a BIFF spokesperson claimed no connection to the suspected bomb maker.

Thirty-two killed in overnight drug raids

At least 32 people have been killed in overnight drug raids in the ongoing war against drugs in the Philippines. The death toll is the highest to be reported from a single anti-narcotics operation within the space of 24 hours. According to the BBC, the raids largely targeted suspected drugs dens in the Bulacan province, north of the capital Manila. Filipino police officials claim that suspects were shot dead after resisting arrest and opening fire on the police. The serving president, Rodrigo Duterte, launched his war on drugs last year and has allegedly killed thousands in drug-related operations and suspected extrajudicial killings. 

Soldier killed in suspected NPA attack in Compestela Valley

A Filipino soldier has been killed and another has been wounded in a suspected militant attack in Compesta Valley. It's believed that armed militants from the New Peoples' Army (NPA) attacked Filipino security personnel in a market near Mawab. One soldier died from a fatal gunshot, while another soldier has also suffered gunshot wounds. The attack has sparked a search operation in the area as the security forces pursue the militants.

Twenty-five killed as MILF clash with IS in Mindanao

At least 25 people have been killed and a further 10 others have been wounded in clashes between Islamic State (IS) militants and the government-supported Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) fighters. The six-day battle has been ongoing in the Mindanao region, where the MILF fighters have been joined by government artillery forces in attempts to clear the area of IS militants. According to Reuters, the death toll included 20 IS militants and five MILF fighters, while another 10 MILF fighters were also wounded.

One killed, hundreds evacuated as fire breaks out in Quezon

At least one person has been killed and hundreds of others have been evacuated after a fire has broken out in Quezon city. The Metro Manila Development Authority has stated that as many as 800 people have been forcibly evacuated and relocated after a large blaze started in a residential area of the Talayan village. While the emergency services have managed to contain and extinguish the fire, large amounts of smoke remain in the area. Investigative operations have been launched as the cause of the fire remains unknown.

Ten militants killed in military operations, Marawi

Ten militants have been killed in the latest round of military operations in Marawi city - which came under siege from Islamist groups earlier this year. The militants were allegedly targeted in air and ground operations on Thursday morning. The total number of militants killed in Marawi so far this year is thought to be around 548, while at least 122 security personnel and 45 civilians have also been killed.

Seven killed as security forces clash with militants in Sulu

Seven people have been killed in clashes between the Filipino security forces and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. The fighting took place in the town of Kalingalan Caluang in Sulu, where Filipino Marines were undertaking a rescue operation to retrieve four Filipino hostages being held by the ASG. The clash broke out when the security forces came across a group of about 30 armed militants. At least one marine was wounded, while two marines were killed along with five ASG militants.

Two journalists killed in shooting incidents

Two journalists have been killed in separate shooting incidents. A journalist who worked for Balita News was shot dead by unidentified gunmen aboard a motorcycle in the President Quirino area, while a second journalist was also shot dead in Molave. The second journalist allegedly reported on political corruption and drug gangs - leading police investigators to suspect that at least one of the perpetrators may have been the subject of an article and was seeking to silence the journalist. The total number of journalists killed under President Duterte has now risen to four.

Five MILF members killed in IED blast, Maguindanao

Five members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front guerrilla group have been killed and six others have been wounded in an explosion caused by an improvised explosive device (IED) in Maguindanao. The incident occurred in a village near Datu Saudi-Ampatuan as MILF guerrillas were in pursuit of militants from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). According to reports, the MILF members were followers of MILF commander Asrap - who has agreed to support the security forces in operations against the BIFF.

NPA militant killed, soldier wounded in Davao clashes

A militant from the New Peoples' Army (NPA) has been killed and a Filipino soldier has been wounded in separate clashes in the Davao region. The first incident occurred in a remote village near the Little Baguio area of Malita, where government troops encountered an undetermined number of NPA militants after responding to a civilian report of the presence of militants in the area. One militant was killed as the armed NPA rebels attempted to flee the scene. A Filipino soldier was also wounded in another encounter in Montevista, Compostela Valley. Approximately 20 armed NPA rebels engaged in a brief firefight with the government forces, leaving one soldier wounded before escaping. Heavy arms and ammunition were recovered from both scenes.

Civilian killed in IED blast, Central Luzon

A civilian has been killed and four others have been wounded in a blast from an improvised explosive device (IED) in the Nuevo Ecija province of Central Luzon. The IED was allegedly planted in the Pasong Inchik area, near a warehouse which had recently been burnt down by suspected New Peoples' Army (NPA) militants. It's suspected the IED had been planted by NPA militants in an attempt to target security personnel, as police officers were investigating the nearby warehouse.

Ozamiz city mayor killed in drug raids

A city mayor has been killed along with six others in a counter-narcotics operation in Ozamiz, Northern Mindanao. Filipino police officers were carrying out a drug raid on the property, seeking to serve arrest warrants to several drug suspects. The shooting allegedly broke out when the suspects resisted arrest and opened fire on the police officers. The city mayor had allegedly been accused of having links to the illegal narcotics trade in the past. One suspect was also arrested by the police officers.

NPA militant killed in gunfight with security forces, Masbate

A member of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) militant group has been killed in a gunfight with the security forces in the Masbate province. The fighting broke out in the early hours of Monday morning as security personnel were conducting a counter-terror operation near Baleno town. According to reports, the security forces came across a group of approximately 15 armed NPA militants - who allegedly opened fire on the security troops, prompting the crossfire. 

Seven civilians beheaded by IS militants in Basilan

Seven civilians have been killed by Islamic State (IS) militants near Lantawan in Basilan. According to reports, the bodies were found in a remote mountainous village near Lantawan and have been identified as loggers who had been kidnapped by suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants earlier in the week. The victims were allegedly beheaded in an execution-style killing - leading police investigators to suspect that they were killed by ASG militants as an act of revenge for a business dispute. The ASG is believed to have a group a group of senior militants leading operations in the Basilan area.

Four NPA militants killed in clashes, Sorsogon

Four members of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) militant group have been killed in clashes with the Filipino government security forces in the Sorsogon province. According to Al Jazeera, military personnel had been carrying out a routine patrol near a village on the outskirts of Casiguran town when a group armed NPA militants allegedly attacked them. The gunfight lasted for half an hour as the government troops repelled the group of approximately 30 militants. A senior NPA militant has allegedly been identified among those killed in the fighting.

Police officer killed in clashes with NPA rebels in Pangasinan

A Filipino police officer has been killed and three others have been wounded in an armed clash with rebels from the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebel group. The clash occurred on Friday morning in San Nicolas of the Pangasinan province, where the police officers had been on patrol in the mountainous border region when they encountered a group of armed NPA rebels. The militants fled the area when military reinforcements arrived.

Three Filipino soldiers killed in IED blast in Marawi

Three Filipino soldiers have been killed in a blast from an improvised explosive device (IED) in Marawi city. Filipino troops have been fighting off Islamist militants for the last two months after Maute group and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants held the city to siege - killing hundreds of people and forcing thousands more to evacuate the city. Military forces have been gradually regaining control of the city and the soldiers had allegedly been in the process of clearing an area abandoned by the militants when the IED was triggered.

State of emergency declared amid floods in Cotabato

A state of emergency has been declared in Cotabato as floods continue to cause widespread disruption. At least 25 out of 37 villages have been partially submerged by flood water, forcing 100,000 people to evacuate their homes to seek help at emergency relief centres. By declaring a state of emergency, the local council could release the funds needed to provide adequate aid to those affected by the flooding. According to local reports, the flooding has been caused by torrential rain and worsened by high tides which raise water levels further. 

Flood warnings issued in Manila as storm approaches

The Manila Disaster Risk Management and Reduction office has issued flood warnings in parts of Metro Manila. The warnings have been issued as a tropical storm makes its way towards the capital city. Storm Gorio is expected to make landfall within the next 24 hours and will pose the most danger to low-lying areas - such as the Baseco Compound, Isla Puting Bato, and Parola - which may be easily flooded. Emergency rescue preparations have been made and those in high-risk areas have been advised to follow the instructions of local authorities in the event of a flood.

Filipino soldier killed in clashes with NPA in Quezon

A Filipino soldier has been killed in clashes with the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in the Mauban area of Quezon province. The fighting broke out in Sitio Bantigue in the early hours of Monday morning - where the armed NPA militants allegedly opened fire on the security forces. According to reports, the NPA rebels fled when government reinforcements arrived at the scene. Search operations have been launched in pursuit of the armed rebels.

NPA rebel killed in military raid, Ilocos Sur

At least one New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebel has been killed and five others have been wounded during a military raid in the Ilocos Sur area over the weekend. The raid was launched after the Filipino military allegedly received information regarding a suspected explosive attack organised by NPA rebels in the town of Salcedo in the Sorioan area. According to local reports, a 30-minute gunfight broke out during the raid, in which one NPA rebel was shot dead. As many as 11 rebels managed to flee the scene, while the security forces seized various explosives, firearms and ammunition from the site. 

Six police killed in NPA ambush

Six Philippine police officers, including a police chief, have been killed and three others wounded during an ambush by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels.  The attack took place in Guihulngan City in Negros Oriental on Friday morning. Capt. Eduardo Precioso of the 3rd Infantry Division said the wounded were brought to Dumaguete for medical treatment. He said the 79th Infantry Battalion is now conducting pursuit operations against the suspects.

NPA rebels ambush PSG guards in North Cotabato

Rebels from the New People's Army (NPA) have ambushed a convoy of the elite Presidential Security Group (PSG) in North Cotabato province.  Five guards were wounded and a paramilitary guard killed during the attack along a road in Arakan town on Wednesday morning. President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered government peace negotiators to terminate talks with the NPA until they stop targeting the security forces.

ASG kidnaps workers in Sulu

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) abducted five construction workers in Sulu province on Saturday. Local police said six ASG gunmen raided Kawpang Elementary School Sports Complex in Patikul in the early hours of the morning. Another worker managed to escape through a window and alerted police at Patikul Municipal station. According to one of the victim's family members, ASG is demanding a P1m ransom for each hostage.

Two children wounded in Maguindanao grenade attack

Two children have been wounded in a grenade attack near Datu Anggal Midtimbang, Maguindanao. The attack occurred in Barangay Poblacion, where unidentified assailants allegedly fired a grenade at a family home on Thursday evening. No group or individual has claimed responsibility for the attack and the motives remain unclear as police investigations continue. The Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) are known to operate in the Datu Anggal area - which has become increasingly volatile as the group becomes more active.

Eight NPA rebels killed in Davao clashes

Eight New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in clashes with the Filipino security forces in the Davao region. The gun battle broke out in the Compostela Valley area of the region, where a group of 40 NPA rebels allegedly opened fire on the security forces, leading to a fatal exchange of fire in which a Filipino soldier and eight NPA rebels were killed. The conflict is the latest violation of an agreed ceasefire between the NPA and government forces.

Civilian death toll in Marawi rises to 45

The civilian death toll in Marawi city has risen to 45 after the Filipino Army have discovered the remains of six people as they recapture parts of the city - which came under militant siege in late May. The remains were found in an area believed to have been used by Islamist militants as an execution site. The bodies were allegedly in an advanced state of decomposition - leading the Filipino security forces to speculate that the victims had been killed at the beginning of the siege over seven weeks ago and may have appeared in a hostage video released on Wednesday 24 May.

Five suspected criminals killed in police raid

Five suspected criminals have been killed after a gun battle broke out during a police raid in North Cotabato. The Filipino police forces had been carrying out an anti-drug raid operation on a property in the Kabacan district when the suspects opened fire on the police officers - forcing retaliatory police fire. Four suspects were arrested and a cache of firearms and explosives was also confiscated by the police.

Vietnamese ASG hostage found dead in military raid

A Vietnamese national has been found dead after being abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) last year. The Filipino armed forces discovered the victim among several other dead bodies during a raid in an undisclosed location believed to be near the southern Batangas province. The victim had been a member of the crew aboard a cargo ship when he was kidnapped by ASG militants, along with five other crew members, in November 2016. While one of the other crew members managed to escape last month, two others were beheaded by the militant group just last week. The ASG is believed to still be holding two of the Vietnamese crew.

Eight NPA rebels killed in gunfight

Eight New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in a gunfight in the Compostela Valley province. The shootout occurred on Wednesday morning near the Laak area, where Filipino armed forces encountered a group of around 40 NPA rebels. The bodies of eight NPA rebels were recovered from the site, along with several high-calibre firearms. The security forces have launched search operations in pursuit of the rebels.

Six soldiers wounded in militant explosion in Quirino

Six Filipino soldiers have been wounded in an explosion in Sangbay village of Nagtipunan, Quirino. The blast has been attributed to suspected New Peoples' Army (NPA) militants and was allegedly a retaliation attack for military operations carried out in Quirino earlier this month. The targeted attack has been seen by Filipino military authorities as an intentional violation of peace agreements and ceasefires arranged with the Filipino government.

Paramilitary volunteer killed in militant attack, Pikit

A paramilitary volunteer has been killed in a violent militant attack in Pikit town. Two armed Islamist militants approached the victim on a motorcycle before opening fire on him. The victim was shot dead, while his son was also wounded in the attack. The incident occurred just 40 metres away from a guarded roadside checkpoint; however, the militants managed to escape on their motorcycle. Military search operations have been launched to find and identify the attackers.

Three ASG killed in Sulu fighting

Three Abu Sayyaf Group militants have been killed in clashes with the government forces in Sulu. The fighting took place over the weekend as the Joint Task Force Sulu (JTF Sulu) launched search operations throughout Sulu. The JTF Sulu encountered armed ASG militants in several villages in Pakitul, engaging in an hour-long gunfight in which three ASG militants have allegedly been killed. At least one JTF Sulu soldier was killed and 15 others were also wounded. 

Two drug suspects killed in undercover operation

Two drug suspects have been killed in an undercover police operation in the Bulacan province. On Saturday morning, the suspects were apprehended in Malolos city by an undercover police officer posing as a buyer. However, when the suspects realised they were dealing with police officers, they opened fire, leading to a shootout in which both suspects lost their lives. No police casualties have been reported.

ASG militant killed in clash with security forces

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has been killed by the security forces during a clash in the Ungkaya Pukan municipality. The fighting broke out in the town of Bohe Pahuh where a group of ASG militants opened fire on the Filipino security forces whilst they were conducting a reconnaissance operation in the area. At least five Filipino soldiers have also been wounded in the gunfight.

Strong earthquake strikes near Leyte

A powerful 6.5-magnitude earthquake has been reported near Tacloban in the Leyte province. According to the US Geological Survey (USGS) the earthquake's epicentre was recorded just three kilometres north-north-east of Masarayao, at a shallow depth of 6.5km. The earthquake struck around 08:03 UTC and local reports have stated that at least 10 people have been wounded as a result of the earthquake. Most of the injuries were caused when a building collapsed in Kananga.

Local leader killed in shooting in Quezon

A local leader has been killed in a shooting incident in Sariaya town in the Quezon province. According to reports, Gaudencio Rama - the leader of a local farmers' group called 'Samapa' - was riding his motorcycle in the Sitio Ilaya area of Canda village when unidentified gunmen opened fire on him. The victim had allegedly received death threats in the time leading up to his death and the incident comes just a month after another a similar incident in the neighbouring Batangas province.

Two ASG hostages found beheaded

Two hostages of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been found beheaded on the island of Basilan. The hostages have been identified as two of six Vietnamese nationals being held captive by ASG militants. The Filipino military discovered the bodies near Sumisip town. The victims were abducted by ASG militants in the waters off Basilan Island in November 2016. While one of the Vietnamese crew has already been rescued, three others are believed to still be in captivity.

MILF rebels attack village in North Cotabato

Members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have attacked the village of Barangay Bualan in North Cotabato. A Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit repulsed the attack, leading to clashes which left three MILF rebels wounded.  Some elements of MILF continue to carry out attacks, despite ongoing peace negotiations with the Philippine government.

Four killed in Cotabato shooting

Four people have been killed in a shooting incident in Cotabato city, Mindanao. According to reports, the incident occurred in the Datu Balabaran village, where a group of gunmen allegedly pulled up in a truck outside the residence of a village official. The gunmen reportedly got out the truck to open fire on the village official and three of his companions. Two of the victims died on the spot, while the other two died in hospital. The incident is believed to have been a targeted murder and is the first major crime to happen in Mindanao since the president declared martial law in the area over a month ago.

Five civilians executed by Maute group in Marawi

At least five civilian hostages have been found dead after being executed by militants of the Islamic Maute group in Marawi city. Militants stormed and took control of the city around five weeks ago and have been violently fighting the Filipino military since. Thousands of people were forced to evacuate the city while hundreds of others have been killed or held hostage. The decapitated bodies were retrieved along by the Filipino armed forces as they military recaptured ground occupied by the rebel group. According to Reuters, as many as 17 others were also found dead in the same area. The discovery of the five decapitated bodies is the first confirmation of militant executions taking place within the city.

Village official shot dead in Murcia

A village councilman has been shot dead in a targeted shooting in the town of Murcia, Negros Occidental. The victim was targeted in Santa Rosa village by two unidentified gunmen who allegedly posed as customers in a restaurant next to the victim's house to position themselves to shoot into the victim's home. Both gunmen escaped on motorcycles with two other accomplices, making a quick getaway. Police investigations have been launched to determine the motive behind the murder.

Seven hostages retrieved from Marawi

Seven hostages have been successfully rescued from Marawi city. The Filipino government troops managed to secure the release of seven hostages during a brief ceasefire. The city of Marawi was attacked by Islamic Maute group militants last month and was captured by the militants, forcing thousands of people to flee the city while hundreds of others were killed or taken hostage.

Two killed in violent Toledo city attacks

Two people have been killed in separate violent attacks in Toledo city of the Central Visayas region. On Sunday evening, unknown gunmen opened fire on a former council official from their car in Ibo village. The shooting was a targeted attack and police investigations have been launched to identify the gunmen. Later that same evening, another man was allegedly stabbed to death in Ilihan village. The stabbing incident is thought to have arisen from a personal dispute and the attacker has been detained by the police. 

Four killed as police clash with NPA rebels in Davao

Four people have been killed in clashes between the Filipino police forces and communist New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in Davao. The fighting broke out over the weekend in Panabo, where the NPA rebels attacked the offices of the provincial public safety company. The police officers were dispatched to repel the attack, killing three NPA rebels in the fighting. A Filipino police officer was also killed by rebel gunfire.

Military truck hit by IED explosion near Munai

A government military truck has been struck by an explosion from an improvised explosive device (IED) near Munai town in Lanao del Norte. The truck was en route from Bacolod town to a military base in the North Cadulawan area in Munai town when an IED hit the vehicle on Sunday morning. No casualties have been reported and no claim of responsibility has been made for the attack. The IED was likely planted by Maute group militants - who have been fighting the government forces in the neighbouring Marawi city.

Australian spy planes to survey southern Philippines

Australian spy planes are due to fly over the southern areas of the Philippines on surveillance missions. The deployment of the military spy planes has come as part of the Australian government's efforts to support the Filipino government's fight against Islamic terrorist groups. Within the last month, the Filipino troops have been tackling Maute group militants in Marawi city, where hundreds have been killed and thousands more have been forced to evacuate after the Islamic militant group attacked the southern city and captured it last month. The Australian military has agreed to provide two AP-3C Orion aircraft to provide surveillance support to the Filipino armed forces.

Islamic militants storm school in North Cotabato

Islamic militants have allegedly stormed a primary school in the North Cotabato province. In the early hours of Wednesday morning, approximately 300 armed militants - mostly Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) - carried out a siege on a school in Pigcawayan town. According to Reuters, the situation has been resolved, with the Filipino security forces pushing the militants out of the area. Unconfirmed reports suggest gunfire was heard in the area and that at least five civilians have been taken hostage by the militants. A BIFF spokesman, Abu Misry Mama, claimed that a number of civilians had been taken away from the fighting as a safety precaution and that they would soon be freed. Pigcawayan lies approximately 190km (120m) south of Marawi City - where a siege has been ongoing for the past few weeks after Islamic Maute group militants stormed the city. The BIFF claim the incidents are not related.

Military offensive launched in Marawi

A military offensive has been launched in the city of Marawi amid the ongoing siege situation. Islamist Maute group militants attacked the city almost five weeks ago and have been battling with government security forces for control of the city since. Thousands of people have evacuated the city and hundreds have been killed. Airstrikes and ground operations have been ongoing in the area since its capture and the Filipino President has also lifted the ban on martial law in the city. The Filipino government has now launched an intensive offensive operation to recapture the city before the Eid al-Fitr - which marks the end of the religious month of Ramadan.

Two terror suspects killed in Maguindanao firefight

Two suspected members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) terrorist group have been killed in a firefight in Maguindanao. The shootout occurred in the town of Shariff Aquak on Monday when the Filipino security forces targeted a BIFF hideout to serve arrest warrants when the militants opened fire. A firearm and an explosive were retrieved from the site.

Internal revenue official shot dead in Quezon

An official of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has been shot dead by unknown assailants in Quezon City. Albert Enriquez, chief of a BIR assessment division, was shot dead after he got out his car on West Avenue on Thursday morning. Video footage shows two men on a motorcycle approaching Enriquez as he parked near the BIR offices. The backseat rider then gets off the motorbike, fires a single shot, shooting Enriquez in the head. The incident is believed to have been a targeted murder and investigations are now working to identify the two gunmen.

Joint counter-terror air operations to be launched

Joint counter-terror air operations are due to be launched between Malaysian, Indonesian and Filippino air forces. The operations are set to be launched after joint maritime operations next month and will monitor terrorist activity in the Sulu Sea. Air forces from Brunei and Singapore have also been invited to observe the joint operations. Terrorism and piracy have increased in the area in recent years, affecting many surrounding countries, prompting extensive international counter-terror efforts.

Fighting continues in Marawi siege

Intense fighting has continued in Marawi City as Islamist Maute group militants have carried out a siege on the city with assistance from Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants. The siege has been ongoing for almost three weeks and thousands of civilians have been forced to flee the city due to the violence. The Western Mindanao Command chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines has estimated that 80 Maute group militants have been killed in the fighting so far while a further 200 militants remain. The militants allegedly control high-rise buildings with strategic vantage points which have hardened artillery operations. Airstrikes have also been carried out in the area.

Thirteen soldiers killed in Marawi gunfights

At least 13 Filipino soldiers have been killed and as many as 40 others have been wounded in violent gunfights in Marawi city over the weekend. Filipino Marines engaged in a 14-hour gun battle with Islamist Maute group and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the southern parts of Marawi. The city has been subjected to three weeks of intense fighting which has seen militants take control of various parts of the city whilst thousands of civilians have fled the area. The militant groups have held many people hostage - including dozens of security personnel and hundreds of civilians. Most recently, five civilians and five police officers being held hostage in the city were rescued on Tuesday. An estimated 65 security personnel remain missing in action.

Ten killed in armed Maguindanao clashes

Ten people have been killed in violent armed clashes between the Filipino security forces and suspected Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao. The fighting broke out on Thursday in the Barangay Pusao area of Maguindanao where at least four BIFF militants have been killed by military gunfire. Six security personnel have also been killed in the clashes.

Government forces to continue airstrikes on Marawi

The Filipino government forces have confirmed the continuation of anti-militant airstrikes in counter-terror operations amid the ongoing siege in Marawi City. The Islamic State (IS) loyalist Maute group and IS-affiliated Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been fighting the security forces after taking control of the city two weeks ago. The airstrikes are due to target the IS groups' strongest fighting positions in the Bangolo, Lilod, and Marinaut areas. Thousands of civilians have fled the city; however, hundreds remain held captive by the militants.

Civilians trapped as ceasefire breaks down in Marawi

Hundreds of civilians remain trapped in Marawi City after a scheduled ceasefire broke down after just one hour. A four-hour truce had been arranged for Sunday 04 June, during which authorities hoped to rescue as many as 1,000 of the 2,000 civilians who remain trapped in the city which has been under militant siege for over a week now. After just one hour, gunfire broke out - leading to the collapse of the ceasefire after only 130 people had been rescued. Overall, 170 people have been killed in the ongoing siege, including 20 civilians.

Dozens killed in casino attack, Manila

At least 36 people have been killed and 25 others have been wounded in an armed attack on a casino and hotel complex in Manila. An armed man entered a casino in the Resorts World Manila complex in the early hours of Friday morning, opening fire indiscriminately as he set fire to furniture and stole casino chips worth 113m Philippine pesos (£1.7m; $2.3m). Leaving the stolen casino chips in a backpack, the suspect then made his way to a hotel room, where he proceeded to set himself on fire in a hotel bed before shooting himself. As police raided the scene, 36 people were found dead, having inhaled toxic smoke fumes from the fire. The incident has allegedly been described as a robbery attempt and the Filipino authorities have denied any connection to terrorism, despite the incident being claimed by the Islamic State (IS). According to the BBC, the suspect has not yet been identified but allegedly suffered from mental health issues.

Ten soldiers killed in friendly fire airstrike, Marawi

At least 10 soldiers have been killed and another eight have been wounded in a government airstrike in Marawi City. Throughout the past week, the city has been the location of intense fighting between the Filipino security forces and Islamic State (IS) loyalist Maute group militants. The friendly fire incident was allegedly intended as a capture attempt of a senior militant leader.

Militants release hostage video, Marawi

Militants in the Marawi City have released a hostage video of a Catholic priest who was kidnapped by the Islamic State (IS) loyalist militants last week. Father Teresito Suganob was abducted by the IS-affiliated Maute group on Wednesday 24 May amid ongoing fighting between the militants and the Filipino security forces in Marawi City. In the footage, Suganob requests - on behalf of the Maute group - a withdrawal from the security forces, claiming he is being held with 200 other people, including children. 

Security forces kill NPA militant in shootout, Agusan del Sur

One New Peoples' Army NPA) militant has been killed and at least four others have been wounded in a shootout with the Filipino armed forces in the Agusan del Sur province. A group of approximately 20 NPA militants encountered the security forces in the Goshen area of Barangay New Tubigon in Sibagat. No military casualties have been reported.

Violent fighting continues in Marawi

Violent fighting has continued in Marawi City, where militants of the Maute group and other Islamic State (IS) loyalist groups have been clashing with the Filipino security forces - killing dozens of people and forcing widespread evacuations. The militants have allegedly taken control of two prisons in the area - stealing weapons and ammunition while recruiting prisoners to fight with them. The area remains under high alert and civilians have been advised to keep clear of the surrounding area until the city is recaptured by the security forces and the militant threat is eliminated.

Militants kill 19 civilians in Marawi

At least 19 civilians have been killed by Maute group militants in Marawi city over the weekend. The executions occurred as violent fighting between the security forces and militant groups has been ongoing in the area throughout the last week. 

Five police officers wounded in twin blast, Cotabato

Five police officers have been wounded in twin blasts along the national highway in the Cotabato province. Two police officers were wounded in the first fo the two explosions, which happened on the highway near President Roxas municipality. Further along the same highway, three more police officers were wounded in another explosion near Barangay Marbel. It's suspected that the two explosions are connected that that the perpetrators were targeting the security forces.

Dozens killed and wounded in Marawi siege

At least 21 people have been killed and another 31 have been wounded in a siege on Marawi City by Maute group militants. Of the 21 people killed, 13 have been identified as Maute group militants. Five Filipino soldiers and three policemen have also been killed in the intense fighting. The violent situation has prompted President Duterte to impose martial law in the area - with threats to extend the coverage of martial law to wider areas if the threat is not contained.

Dozens of hostages rescued in Marawi

Dozens of civilian hostages have been rescued in Marawi City after the militant Maute group occupied Amai Pakpak Hospital, Marawi City Hall, the city jail, and parts of the Mindanao State University compound. Approximately 120 people were rescued as the security forces pushed back the militant groups and regained control of the hospital - where 78 civilians were being held against their will - and a school building, where 42 teachers were being held. In another area of Marawi, the Maute group combined forces with militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and opened fire on a military base. No casualties were reported.

Airstrikes conducted against militants in Marawi

The Filipino security forces have conducted a series of airstrikes in Marawi city. The airstrikes have been carried out against militants of the Maute group, who have been battling with the security forces in the area for a couple of days - forcing a lockdown in Davao city, heightened security alerts in Ninoy Aquino International Airport and Mindanao metro systems, and the evacuation of hundreds of people from surrounding areas. According to reports, between 30 to 40 Maute militants remain in the Marawi area. No casualty figures have been confirmed yet.

Airport and metro on full alert in Mindanao

The airport and metro system in the Mindanao area have been placed on full alert amid the recent militant attacks in Marawi by the Maute group. The Filipino security forces have been clashing with the militants over the last few days, prompting widespread evacuations. Davao city has also been placed on lockdown. Ninoy Aquino International Airport has enforced maximum security measures in light of the situation. Travellers have been advised to avoid the area and postpone planned trips.

Davao city on lockdown amid Maute group clashes

Davao city has been placed on lockdown amid ongoing clashes between the Maute militant group and the Filipino security forces in Marawi, Mindanao. At least five soldiers have been killed thus far and at least 23 others have been wounded. The fighting has been ongoing since Tuesday and hundreds of people have been forced to evacuate their homes. Authorities have advised travellers to avoid the area and to cancel any planned trips.

Military clash with militants in Mindanao

Hundreds of people have been forced to evacuate from their homes amid ongoing clashes between the Filipino military forces and the Maute militant group in Mindanao. The clashes have largely affected the Marawai area - where the Caloocan village and the Basak Malutlut village have both been evacuated due to the intense firefight. The military forces have received aerial support as a high-level alert has been issued in the area. No casualty figures have been confirmed as of yet.

ASG militant killed in security operations

One Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has been killed and two others have been arrested in separate security operations. The security forces clashed with a number of ASG militants during security operations in the Sulu area, killing one militant before the rest of the group fled. In another incident, two ASG militants were arrested by the police forces in Lamitan City, Basilan, after they surrendered to the security forces during police operations. 

Dozens wounded in hospital explosion, Bangkok

Dozens of people have been wounded in a bomb explosion in a Bangkok hospital. A guest room for retired military officials in the King Mongkut Hospital was hit by an explosion on Monday morning. According to reports, remains were found which indicated the explosion originated from a battery-powered improvised explosive device (IED). At least 24 people have sustained minor injuries, with three receiving hospital treatment. No group or individual has claimed responsibility for the attack and investigations are ongoing.

Ten militants killed in military operations, Mindanao

At least 10 militants have been killed and eight others have been wounded in clashes with the security forces during military operations in Mindanao. The Filipino military forces were conducting a search operation in the Bual village in the Sultand Kudarat province when they encountered the group of militants and a gunfight broke out. Several firearms and ammunition have been confiscated from the site and one militant has been arrested.

Couple kidnapped and killed, Navotas

A couple has been kidnapped and killed by suspected militants in the Navotas area. According to reports, 14 masked men on motorcycles abducted a known drug suspect, Jenny Royo, and her partner from their private residence in Navotas. Although Royo had signed herself up to an official drug rehabilitation scheme, it is likely that the abduction and murders were linked to drug criminals.

Two soldiers wounded in roadside bombing, Maguindanao

Two Filipino soldiers have been wounded after being struck by an improvised explosive device (IED) in Maguindanao. The IED had been planted along the roadside in the Timbangan village in the town of Shariff Aguak. It is highly suspected that the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were behind the attack, as the BIFF militants have used IEDs to target the security forces in the past.

Police rescue hostage in drug bust, Central Visayas

The Filipino police forces have rescued a kidnap victim who was being held hostage by a suspected drug pusher in Central Visayas. The suspect was detained in Barangay Pajo in Lapu-Lapu City - where he was found in possession of 100g of methamphetamine hydrochloride (aka 'Shabu') worth almost 600,000 Filipino pesos (around $12,000).  It's believed the suspect had kidnapped a 16-year-old girl and was allegedly forcing her to assist his illegal drug activities. 

Two ASG militants killed in hostage situations, Bohol

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in hostage situations in the Bohol province, Central Visayas. The first ASG militant, was killed on Pangangan Island in Calape, Bohol, after he and an accomplice held an elderly man and his grandson hostage, attempting to flee with the hostages on motorcycles. The suspect, identified as Abu Ubayda, was shot dead during a police chase. Another ASG militant was also shot dead in a similar incident in Barangay Kahayag of Calape. It remains unknown if the two incidents were connected.

Twenty ASG killed in military operations, Basilan

At least 20 Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in recent military operations carried out by the Filipino armed forces in the Basilan province. The Filipino air force used FA-50 fighter jets to conduct a series of airstrikes on an ASG camp in the Sumisip area on Thursday, before ground troops engaged in a brief battle with the militants before the ASG fled the area. No military or civilian casualties have been reported.

Two earthquakes hit near Davao Oriental

Two 4.2-magnitude earthquakes have hit the Davao Oriental area. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology has reported that the first earthquake was tectonic in origin and struck approximately 58km south-east of Caraga town at 11:07 local time on Thursday morning, at a depth of 26km. A second earthquake of the same magnitude occurred later on in the day, at 15:15 in the afternoon, in a similar location - approximately 40km south-east of Caraga town. The second tremor was significantly more shallow than the first - at a depth of just 15km. No major damages or casualties have been reported; however, aftershocks are expected.

Filipino soldier kidnapped by NPA rebels, Bukidnon

A Filipino soldier has been kidnapped by rebels of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) in the Bukidnon province. The soldier was abducted from the Poblacion area of Valencia city by a number of NPA militants who had disguised themselves Filipino police uniforms. The abduction allegedly occurred whilst NPA militants simultaneously raided the nearby offices of a security agency - stealing weapons and other valuables. The incident may sour peace talks which are ongoing between NPA leaders and government representatives in Manila.

Four policemen arrested on kidnap charges

Four Filipino policemen have been arrested in Metro Manila on charges of kidnap and ransom. The policemen were detained in Paranaque and have been accused of abducting at least two people and attempting to extort a ransom of 400,000 pesos (just over $8,000). As a result of the arrests, a police chief and an intelligence chief have also been fired from their positions.

Four policemen wounded in Maguindanao bombing

Four police officers have been wounded in a bomb explosion in the Maguindanao area. The policemen were travelling in a patrol vehicle in Mamasapano town when Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) remotely detonated an improvised explosive device (IEF) which had been planted along the roadside. The explosion comes just days after two people were killed and three others were wounded in an explosion in the Quiapo district of Manila. The BIFF militant group have not claimed responsibility for the attack.

Twenty militants killed in clashes, Maguindanao

At least 20 Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have been killed and seven others have been wounded in clashes with the Filipino security forces in Maguindanao. The fighting took place over the weekend in the Tee and Dapiawan villages in the Datu Salibo town. The security forces allegedly repelled approximately 100 BIFF with air and artillery strikes. According to reports, a BIFF commander was killed in the fighting. 

Five ASG militants killed in Basilan clashes

At least five Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in clashes between the ASG militants and Filipino security forces in the Sumisip town of the Basilan area. Two ASG militants were killed in an encounter with the security forces in the Upper Cabcaban village on Saturday morning, while another three were killed in the Mahatallang village on Saturday night.

ASG militant arrested in Central Visayas

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militant has been arrested in police operations in Central Visayas. The suspect was apprehended by police officers in the Bohol area and has been identified as one out of three ASG suspects wanted by the police in targeted operations. 

Senior ASG leader killed in police operations, Mindanao

A senior Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) leader has been killed in police operations in the southern region of Mindanao. The ASG militant was shot down in a shootout with the Filipino police forces in the Sulu area - where the ASG are known to have an operational stronghold. Police operations against the militant group are ongoing and travellers should avoid the region where possible.

Fourteen wounded in pipe bomb explosion, Manila

At least 14 people have been wounded in a pipe bomb explosion in Manila. The incident occurred on Quezon Boulevard in Manila on Friday 28 April. The site of the explosion was just 5km away from an ASEAN leaders' meeting - which was also taking place in Metro Manila. No suspects have been identified as of yet and investigations are ongoing.

Powerful earthquake hits near Mindanao

A powerful 7.2-magnitude earthquake has struck near the southern Filipino island of Mindanao. The earthquake hit at 20:23 UTC on Friday 28 April, and had a recorded depth of 10km. The epicentre was located approximately 68km south of General Santos city. While no tsunami warning has been issued, the Tsunami Centre advised that dangerously large waves should still be expected throughout a 300km radius of the epicentre. No major casualties or damages have been reported.

One soldier wounded in gunfight with NPA rebels, Davao Oriental

A Filipino soldier has been wounded after a fierce gunfight between the Filipino armed forces and rebels of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) broke out in Davao Oriental on Sunday morning. The fighting took place near the Aliwagwag Ecopark and Visitor Centre in the town of Cateel. Approximately 40 NPA rebels were involved in the firefight - in which the outnumbered military forces managed to repel the rebel forces. The NPA rebels have likely suffered several casualties; however, no figures have been confirmed. The park and surrounding area has been temporarily closed to the public and travellers have been advised to postpone visits.

Earthquake strikes near Mindanao

A 5.3-magntiude earthquake has struck near the southern Mindanao area. The earthquake occurred at 01:19 UTC (09:19 local time) on Sunday morning. The epicentre was located near Tandag city at a depth of 62.8km. No major damages or casualties have been reported and no tsunami warning has been issued. Earthquakes often occur in the Philippines due to the proximity to the seismically active 'Ring of Fire' surrounding the Pacific plate.

Eight wounded in grenade attack, Maguindanao

Eight people have been wounded in a grenade attack in Maguindanao. The attack happened near a mosque in the Talayan area in the early afternoon on Saturday, when a hand grenade was thrown at a group of people by unknown assailants. The current and former mayors of Talayan were among those wounded - along with their sons and security guards - implying the attack was a targeted incident. 

Four ASG militants killed in gunfight, Bohol

Four Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in a gunfight with the Filipino security forces in Bohol. The crossfire occurred on Saturday, in the Sitio Lagising area of the Bacane village in the town of Clarin - where the security forces allegedly advised citizens to hide before the gunfight broke out. An ASG leader is believed to be among those killed.

Thirty IS militants killed in military operations, Lanao del Sur

At least 30 Islamic State (IS) militants have allegedly been killed in military operations in the Lanao del Sur area. Over the weekend, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) allegedly conducted a three-day counter-terror operation against the IS-affiliated Maute group. The AFP forces conducted air and ground operations near the Piagapo Complex, capturing a Maute group camp. The Maute group are suspected of working with Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi areas.

NPA leader killed clashes with security forces, Albay

A leader of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) militant group has been killed in clashes with the security forces in the Albay province. The Filipino troops encountered five NPA rebels in the Talisay village in Oas on Friday morning - leading to a violent gunfight. A hand grenade, a firearm and ammunition were retrieved from the site. No other casualties have been reported.

Chinese coastguard accused of firing on Filipino fishermen

A Chinese coastguard has been accused of firing on a group of Filipino fishermen in the South China Sea. The alleged incident occurred on Monday 27 March near the Spratly islands; however, investigations into the allegations have only recently been launched. The Filipino authorities are leading the investigations.

Dozens of ASG militants arrested in Sulu

At least 34 Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been arrested in the Sulu area. Filipino soldiers detained the ASG militants in Pakitul town on Wednesday. At least one person - a suspected human trafficker believed to have been affiliated with the ASG - has also died from gunshot wounds. The ASG operate largely out of the Sulu area and often target foreign nationals in kidnap and ransom operations - making it a dangerous destination for tourists and travellers.

Two soldiers released by NPA rebels, Davao del Sur

Two Filipino army soldiers have been released from captivity by the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in Matanao, Davao del Sur. The hostages were originally kidnapped by NPA rebels three months ago and were allegedly released as a gesture of good will towards the Filipino authorities ahead of resumed peace talks.

One security officer killed in shooting, Pasig City

One security officer has been killed in a shooting incident in Pasig City in the Northern Capital region. The officer had been part of the Criminal Investigation and Defection Group (CIDG) and was shot at by unidentified armed assailants as they rode past on a motorcycle in the early hours of Monday morning. The CIDG officer had been at a Shell gas station at the time of the attack - which is suspected to have been a targeted killing.

Dozens killed in passenger bus crash, Nueva Ecija

At least 31 people have been killed and 46 others have been wounded in a passenger bus crash in the Nueva Ecija province. The accident occurred on Tuesday near the town of Carranglan in Nueva Ecija - where the passenger bus allegedly experienced a brake failure on a downhill road and crashed into a 24-metre-deep ravine. At least 77 passengers were on board the bus at the time of the accident. Despite the brake failure, the road is allegedly known to be particularly dangerous and travellers have been advised to drive slowly and carefully. 

Six soldiers wounded in clash with militants, Maguindanao

At least six Filipino soldiers have been wounded after fighting with the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in the Maguindanao area. The clash occurred in the Sitio Pinaginuman area of Elian village in the Datu Saudi Ampatuan area of Maguindanao. The operations saw the armed forces take control of a BIFF gun factory.

Hostage killed by Abu Sayyaf

The Abu Sayyaf militant group has beheaded a Filipino fisherman taken hostage in December, according to the Philippine army.  Brigadier-General Cirilito Sobejana, the military commander on the southern island of Jolo, said the boat's captain was executed near the town of Patikul last week.  Four fishermen were kidnapped during the hijacking in the Celebes Sea.

Two NPA rebels killed in Agusan del Sur clash

Two New People's Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in clashes with Philippine troops in Agusan del Sur.  Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesman Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla said the fighting took place in San Luis town on Thursday afternoon.  The NPA were reportedly harassing and extorting local residents in the area.

Eight killed in clashes between ASG and police, Bohol

At least eight people have been killed during a clash between the Filipino security forces and militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Bohol province. Five ASG militants and three security personnel have been killed in a firefight which broke out in the popular tourist destination. The incident is the second major clash with the ASG in the province recently, raising concerns that the militant group - who engage in kidnap and ransom activity - intend to target foreign travellers. The clash has occurred just days after a travel warning was issued in the region regarding the ongoing threat of the ASG.

Strong earthquake strikes in Lanao del Sur

A strong 5.8-magnitude earthquake has struck near Wao in the Lanao del Sur area of Mindanao. The earthquake occurred at 05:21 local time (21:21 UTC) on Wednesday morning at a shallow depth of 8.3km and is believed to have been tectonic in origin. Some infrastructural and material damages have occurred and some areas have experienced brief power outages. No casualties have been reported and those in the areas affected should anticipate further aftershocks.

Nine killed in ASG clashes with security forces, Central Visayas

At least nine people have been killed in clashes between Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants and Filipino security forces in Central Visayas. The security forces encountered a group of 10 armed ASG militants in the village of Napo near Inabanga town in the Bohol province of Central Visayas. Among those killed were five ASG militants, three Filipino soldiers and one Filipino policeman. The presence of the ASG has made the region increasingly dangerous for foreign travellers and tourists.

Village chief kidnapped and released by NPA rebels

A village chief has been kidnapped and released by New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in the Magepet area of North Cotabato. The NPA rebels allegedly abducted the chairman of the Mahungcog village on Sunday after storming the village and ordering all male residents to come out of their homes in order to identify the chairman. The victim was then taken by the rebels and later released by the rebels on Tuesday morning.

Three ASG militants killed in clash with military, Mindanao

At least three  Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and 11 others have been wounded in a clash with the Filipino military in Mindanao. The fighting occurred when the Filipino troops encountered the ASG militants in the Sumisip area of Basilan. Of the 11 people wounded, five were ASG militants and six were Filipino soldiers. No civilian casualties have been reported.

Earthquake detected in the Philippine Sea

A 5.4-magntiude earthquake has occurred in the Philippine Sea, approximately 89km north-east of Mapanas in Northern Samar. The earthquake - which was tectonic in origin - occurred at 08:43 local time on Monday morning and had a depth of approximately 27km. Tremors were felt in the Northern Samar and Sorsogon areas; however, no damages or casualties were incurred and no tsunami warning has been issued. Some small aftershocks may be expected.

One soldier wounded in NPA clash

A Filipino soldier has been wounded in a clash between the Filipino military and the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in Eastern Visayas. The clashes occurred during a routine military patrol in the Hubasan village in the Calbiga area in the Samar province of the Eastern Visayas region. No NPA casualties have been reported.

Filipino soldier killed by BIFF militant in Mindanao

A Filipino Armed Forces soldier has been killed by a militant of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) militant group on the Mindanao island. The soldier has been deployed as part an unarmed engineering battalion in the Mamasapano town of the Maguindanao region when the BIFF militant opened fire on the soldier, killing him on the spot.

Ten ASG killed in gunfight with military, Sulu

At least 10 Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and 32 Filipino military personnel have been wounded after a gunfight broke out in the town of Talipao in Sulu. The gunfight broke out after the Filipino troops encountered a group of over 100-strong ASG militants. Although no security personnel were killed, large numbers were wounded due to militant possession of high-calibre weapons. No civilian casualties have been reported. The Sulu Archipelago remains one of the most dangerous areas for travellers due to the high rate of militant activity in the area.

Twelve killed in military clashes with NPA rebels, General Nakar

At least 12 people have been killed in recent clashes between the Filipino military troops and the communist New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in the General Nakar region, east of Manila. ABC News has reported that approximately 10 out of a group of 30 NPA rebels were killed in the clash, while two Filipino security personnel are also believed to have been killed. Casualty figures have not been officially confirmed by the military and the NPA rebels have not issued a comment on the clash. The fighting has occurred just days before the NPA are due to negotiate peace talks with the Filipino government on Sunday 02 April.

NPA rebels attack military posts

Rebels of the New Peoples' Army (NPA) have attacked military posts in the Samar and Northern Samar provinces. The rebels first attacked a military post in the early hours of Thursday morning near Motiong town in Samar. A second attack then followed on another military post near Silvino Lobos in the Northern Samar province. No security personnel have been wounded in the attacks and it remains unknown whether or not the NPA rebels sustained any casualties. 

Filipino hostage rescued from ASG in Mindanao

A Filipino national has been rescued after being held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The victim - a chief engineer on board a boat - was abducted by ASG militants with his captain from waters just off the Basilan area of Mindanao. Filipino troops managed to retrieve the engineer from the Sito Sasa area of Basakan village in Basilan. The rescue comes just one day after three Malaysian nationals were also rescued from the ASG by Filipino troops. Those in the area should be aware there is a significantly higher risk of kidnap at sea, as the loss of hostages may provoke ASG militants into action - to recover the loss of potential ransoms which provide the militant group with the revenue needed to fund terrorist activity.

Four killed in roadside bomb explosion, Jolo

At least four people have been killed and as many as 18 have been wounded in a roadside bomb explosion on Jolo Island. An improvised explosive device (IED) was reportedly planted along a roadside and detonated near Sitio Lambayon in Busbos village. Police investigations are underway and several suspects have been identified and detained for questioning.

Three ASG hostages rescued on Jolo island

Three Malaysian hostages held by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been rescued by Filipino troops on Jolo island. The victims were originally abducted eight months ago by ASG militants and were the only Malaysian nationals still be held by the militant group. 

One soldier killed in clashes with NPA rebels, Davao

One Filipino soldier has been killed and three others have been wounded in clashes with the New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels in the Davao region. Ground troops clashed with the NPA rebels in a series of encounters in the Sitios Maglahos area of Sobecary village in Caraga. Two soldiers were wounded in the first altercation and one soldier was killed while another was wounded in further fighting.

Four people kidnapped by ASG in Mindanao

Four people have been kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants from a southern island in the Mindanao area. According to local reports, the victims had been on a cargo ship en route to General Santos City when the ship was intercepted by three militant speed boats. Two Filipino crew members, the Captain, and the chief engineer were abducted from the ship. The ASG has not commented on the incident; however, local authorities believe the ASG militants were behind the abduction due to their history of targeting vessels in nearby areas. Just hours before the kidnapping, two Malaysian hostages were rescued from ASG militants in the nearby Sulu waters.

Two ASG hostages rescued by marines near Pata Island, Sulu

Two Malaysian nationals who were being held hostage by the militant Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been rescued by Filipino marines in waters near Pata Island in the Sulu province. The victims had been abducted by the ASG in July from a tugboat in the waters of Sabah state. It's possible the hostages were being transferred to another location by the ASG militants at the time of the rescue. Both victims have received medical attention at a military hospital.

One killed, eight wounded in NPA clash, Sultan Kudarat

One Filipino Marine soldier has been killed and eight others have been wounded in a clash with the New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Sultan Kudarat. The rebels allegedly ambushed the Marine Battalion Landing Team in the Kalamansig area of Sultan Kudarat. The marines engaged in a day-long gunfight with the rebels. No casualty figure has been confirmed for the rebels. No civilians were harmed in the exchange of fire.

Dozens killed and wounded in three-day military operation, Maguindanao

At least 21 militants of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have been killed and 26 others have been wounded in a three-day operation carried out by the Filipino military in Maguindanao. A military official confirmed the operations in a statement on Sunday 19 March - stating that the operations were launched on Monday 13 March and were continued until Thursday 16 March. The operations were carried out in by the Joint Task Force-Central (JTF-C) - who targeted BIFF militants in the Datu Salibo area. No civilian or JTF-C casualties were inflicted.

ASG leader killed in security operations, Tawi-Tawi

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) leader has been killed in security operations in the Tawi-Tawi area. The ASG leader, identified as Butchoy Hassan, was killed by the Filipino security forces in a Joint Task Force operation which targeted ASG militants in the main town of Sitangkai Island. Hassan was a low-level ASG leader and is believed to have been directly involved in abductions and narcotics trading. 

Teacher abducted and released by ASG, Sulu

A Filipino teacher has been abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and quickly released over the weekend in the Sulu area. Local reports claim that Ibrahim Potong - a public school teacher of Islamic faith - was kidnapped by ASG militants on Friday evening from Patikul town and later released in Maimbung on Sunday. It remains unknown why the ASG abducted Potong, or why he was released so quickly. The ASG are thought to currently be holding 31 hostages of various nationalities. 

Journalist killed in shooting, Masbate

A journalist has been killed in a shooting incident in the Masbate area on Monday morning. The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) confirmed the death of Remate columnist Joaquin Briones - stating he was shot dead on Bombon Bridge along Sitio Feeder Road in Bacolod village. Briones was allegedly shot in the back four times. The Inquirer has reported that the NUJP commented that Briones (who was released from prison in 2012 after serving 12 years on charges of libel) has been the second journalist to be killed under the Duterte administration -which has been widely criticised for its alleged encouragement of covert extrajudicial killings behind closed doors.

Rebels and government forces to resume peace talks

The rebel New People's Army (NPA) and the Filipino government forces have agreed to resume peace talks a month after the ceasefire was terminated. The Filipino government prematurely ended the ceasefire in early February, over claims that NPA forces had already violated the ceasefire in January. According to ABC News, a sharp escalation in violent clashes recently has led to the decision to renew peace talks. The talks will commence in early April.

Two killed, one missing in floods, Mindanao

Two people have been killed and one other remains missing after floods have hit the Mindanao region. Two people were reported dead on Saturday after heavy rain caused the Basilan, Lanao del Norte, Maguindanao Misamis Occidental, Sarangani, Sultan Kudarat, and Sulu provinces to flood over the weekend. Many roads have been rendered unusable and residents have allegedly resorted to travelling by boat. Travellers and foreign nationals have been advised not to attempt to travel through the flood-hit areas.

Dozens evacuated amid floods, Sarangani

Dozens of people have been evacuated from their homes in the Sarangani province as heavy rains have caused two major rivers to overflow. Rivers running through the Maitum and Kiamba towns have flooded river bank areas - forcing the evacuation of a collective total of 43 families. Those in the areas affected have been advised to remain cautious of the continued possibility of further flooding.

Five police officers killed in NPA attack, Davao del Sur

Five police officers have been killed in a rebel attack in the Davao del Sur region. Suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels ambushed the police officers in Bansalan town as they were en route to investigate a crime scene. The rebels were allegedly armed with heavy weapons and managed to flee the scene following the attack. The NPA rebels have frequently been clashing with government security forces since the termination of a ceasefire agreement in early February.

Four NPA rebels killed in military clash, Quezon

Four New People's Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in a clash with the Filipino military in the Quezon province. The Army's 201st Infantry Brigade engaged in a gunfight with a group of 20 NPA rebels in the Mabunga village near San Fransisco town in Quezon. No military casualties were reported and the soldiers also recovered two AK-47 rifles and an M16 rifle from the site of the encounter. Pursuit operations have been launched by the military and police forces.

Nine ASG killed, 15 wounded in clashes, Sulu

Nine Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and 15 others have been wounded in clashes with the Filipino Marine troops in the Sulu province. The Marine Special Operations Group (MARSOG) under the 64th Marine Company launched a pursuit operation in the area on Sunday - encountering the ASG militants in the Ipil village of Maimbung town. The operations remain ongoing as the MARSOG continues to search the area. The ASG are believed to be holding over 30 hostages.

Fourteen soldiers wounded in clashes with ASG in Sulu

At least 14 Filipino soldiers have been wounded in clashes with Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Sulu province. The clashes occurred in the Igasan village of Pakitul town where soldiers of the Filipino Army's 32nd Infantry Battalion encountered a group of armed ASG militants during counter-terror search operations. The ASG has not commented on the incident and it remains unknown if the ASG suffered any casualties. No civilians were harmed. The incident comes just two days after 11 Filipino soldiers were wounded in a gunfight with ASG militants in the nearby Indanan town.

Two ASG killed in clash with Filipino military in Sulu

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and sixteen others have been wounded in clashes with the Filipino government troops in the Sulu province. The clash occurred as part of a military offensive operation targeting ASG militants in the Indanan town of Sulu. Joint Task Force Commander Colonel Cirilito Sobejana told the Enquirer that five ASG militants and 11 soldiers were wounded in the confrontation. The militant group is believed to be holding over 30 hostages and most recently executed a German hostage last week after ransom demands were not met.

Three NPA rebels killed in clashes

Three New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in clashes with the Filipino security forces. According to the Manila Bulletin, one NPA rebel was killed in a clash with the 730th Combat Group as they were conducting operations in the Lian area of Batangas. The 10th Infantry Division also told Davao Today that the 60th Infantry Battalion encountered a group of NPA rebels in the Asuncion area of Davao del Norte, killing two rebels in the subsequent shootout, while 20 other rebels managed to escape.

Protests take place outside US Embassy, Jakarta

Protests have taken place outside the US Embassy in Jakarta on the 21st anniversary of the People Power Revolution. Protesters rallied on Saturday to march from Kalaw Avenue to the US Embassy in honour of the anniversary and were met by anti-riot police outside the embassy. The police forces used water cannons to prevent protesters from entering the embassy grounds - two people were injured in the commotion. The gathering dispersed to regroup near the People Power Monument on Epifanio delos Santos Avenue in Quezon City. The protest remained mostly peaceful.

ASG allegedly kills German hostage

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has allegedly killed German hostage, Jurgen Kantner. The 70-year-old German national was abducted by the ASG militant group in November when his boat was ambushed by the group in dangerous Filipino waters and his wife was shot dead. The couple had previously been abducted by Somali pirates in 2008 and were released after 52 days in exchange for a six-figure sum. The Filipino Army have received reports that the ASG have beheaded Kantner after the German government failed to meet demands for a $600,000 ransom. These reports have not been independently confirmed by a representative of the ASG and Filipino Army officials have stated that rescue operations will continue until a death is officially confirmed.

Transport strikes to take place, Western Visayas

Transport strikes have been scheduled to take place in the Western Visayas province on Monday 27 February. Most Bacolod transport services are expected to take part in the strike action as workers protest a government phaseout of older public utility vehicles (PUVs). The government is requiring any PUV which is 15-years-old or older to be phased out in favour of newer models in the interest of public health and safety; however, protesters claim the costs of replacing old PUVs will be too high for transport companies to remain profitable.

Two NPA rebels killed in clashes, Capiz

Two suspected New Peoples' Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in clashes with the Filipino government security forces in Capiz. Military troops encountered a group of seven NPA rebels in the Sito Maknoy area of the Jebaca village in Ma-ayon town, leading to a 30-minute gunfight. No security troops were injured during the clash, and four weapons were seized from the site. The government security forces have been clashing with NPA rebels frequently since the end of a ceasefire agreement in early February.

One child killed, three wounded in grenade explosion, Zamboanga

One school child has been killed and three others have been wounded in a grenade explosion on school grounds in Zamboanga. The four students of the Comprehensive National High School in the Poblacion village of the Lakewood area discovered an M79 grenade in their school's grounds. The grenade exploded when the children started playing with it. The premises was cleared by military and police personnel and investigations into how the incident came about are still ongoing.

Council member killed in shooting, Pangasinan

A member of the Banaoang village council, Wilfredo de Vera, has been killed in a drive-by shooting in the Pangasinan province. Unidentified gunmen riding a motorcycle opened fire on de Vera in Calasiao town. It's been reported that de Vera had just arrived at his house to meet his children when he was shot dead. Police investigations are underway and no suspects have been identified yet.

Seven wounded in grenade explosion, Manila

Seven people have been wounded in a grenade attack in Manila. The explosion occurred in late Sunday evening as a male assailant allegedly threw the grenade at people in the San Andres Bukid area of Manila. The assailant was captured and mauled by a mob, and reportedly claimed he did not know why he had thrown the explosive. The suspect is now in police custody and will face at least five criminal charges.

One killed, seven kidnapped in ASG attack

One sailor has been killed and seven others have been kidnapped in the latest piracy attack in Filipino waters. The attack took place in waters near Baguan Island in Tawi Tawi - near the notorious Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) stronghold. The attack targeted a vessel crewed by 25 men - 17 of whom were rescued by the Filipino coast guards and marine soldiers. The ASG are an Islamic State-affiliated militant pirate group who operate largely in and around the Sulu Archipelago and frequently ambush, kill and abduct sailors. It's estimated the group now holds over 30 hostages.

Thousands evacuated as floods hit Compostela Valley

Thousands of people have been evacuated as floods have hit the Compostela Valley in the Davao region. Heavy rain has caused extreme floods to swamp the valley - forcing the evacuation of thousands of people to evacuation centres in southern Mindanao. One village watchman also drowned in the floods as he was swept away by floodwaters in the Maragusan area of the valley. The heavy rain has also heightened the risk of landslides int he area - with several houses already being hit by landslips. The intense rains and water levels have begun to decrease and subside, however there is a continued risk of landslides as the ground will remain excessively wet for several more days.

Five killed, 15 wounded in rebel attacks

Five people have been killed and 15 others have been wounded in a rebel attack on the Filipino military in the southern regions of the Philippines. Two Filipino soldiers were killed in the Calinan district when New People's Army (NPA) rebels allegedly targeted a military convoy with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). Fifteen Filipino soldiers were also wounded in the IED explosion and two NPA rebels were killed in the gunfight which broke out after the blast. Another NPA rebel was killed in a rebel attack on a militia department in the nearby Binaton village of the Paquibato district. The military has since launched retaliatory pursuit operations against the rebels.

Militant killed in military operation, Northern Samar

A militant of the rebel New People's Army (NPA) has been killed in recent military operations in Northern Samar. The Filipino Army announced the death in a press release - confirming that the death occurred during a five-hour gunfight between military troops and the NPA rebels. An Improvised Explosive Device (IED) was also seized from the rebel group, along with three mobile phones. Since the ending of the ceasefire between the government and the NPA in early February, there have been frequent clashes between the Filipino military and the militants.

Earthquakes hits Central and Southern Mindanao

A 5.1-magnitude earthquake has hit the Central and Southern Mindanao areas. The earthquake occurred at 14:27 local time on Thursday 16 February. The epicentre was located in Digos City in Davao del Sur and was tectonic in origin. Tremors were felt as far as Davao City and the Sarangai province, however no major damages or casualties have been reported. The Philippine Insitute of Volcanology and Seismology has issued a low-level warning of the risk of small aftershock tremors.

Eight wounded in bus attack, Zamboanga

Eight people have been wounded after armed men opened fire on a passenger bus in Zamboanga. The unidentified assailants started shooting at the Rural Transit bus in the Barangay Muti area as it was en route to Pagadian City. Nearby Filipino soldiers immediately responded to the incident, engaging in a brief exchange of fire before the assailants fled on foot. Marine soldiers treated wounded passengers at the scene before they were transferred to hospital, and a replacement bus service was dispatched to resume the bus service as usual. 

Militants attack military convoy, Caraga

Militants of the New People's Army (NPA) have allegedly attacked a military convoy in the Caraga area. The convoy had been escorted non-governmental organisations (NGOs) en route to deliver relief to earthquake victims in the Surigao del Norte area when the NPA rebels reportedly ambushed the convoy. The military managed to repel the attack, with no military or NGO casualties. The NPA have not commented on the incident. 

Three killed in militant attack, Agusan del Norte

Three people have been killed and three others have been wounded in a militant attack on Filipino armed forces in the Agusan del Norte province. Militants of the rebel New People's Army (NPA) launched an attack on military troops in the Sitio Sarog village in the Barangay San Isidro area of the province. One soldier and two civilians were killed and three more civilians were wounded when NPA rebels opened fire on the security forces before fleeing the area.

ASG threatens German hostage execution

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has released a video of German hostage Jurgen Gustav Kantner, threatening to behead him. Four ASG militants held guns to Kantner's head as he was forced to state that unless a ransom was paid to the group by Sunday 26 February, they would execute him. The German government has yet to respond to the video. Kantner was abducted by ASG militants in November 2016 when he was sailing with his wife - who was killed by the militants - on their boat in the waters off the Sabah coast.

Two killed in shootings, Calabarzon

Two people have been killed in separate shootings in the Calabarzon area. One individual was shot by unidentified assailants on a motorcycle in Rizal, while another was shot dead by an unknown assailant in the Batangas area. Both suspects managed to flee the scenes unidentified, however it is not believed the incidents are connected. Police investigations are underway.

Earthquake kills six people in Surigao del Norte

At least six people have been killed and dozens of others have been wounded in a recent earthquake in the Surigao del Norte province of Mindanao island. The 6.7-magntiude earthquake struck the area on Friday 10 February, at a depth of 10km with the epicentre located approximately 14km from Surigao City. An estimated 126 people are thought to have been wounded in the earthquake. Public transport services have been severely disrupted and the airport was temporarily closed following the earthquake. Significant infrastructural damage has been reported and there remains a continued risk of aftershock tremors in the region.

Filipino government declares NPA terrorist organisation

The Filipino government has announced that the New People's Army (NPA) of the communist rebels is officially recognised by the state as a terrorist organisation. President Duterte prematurely ended a ceasefire agreement with the NPA rebels this week and following another clash between Filipino government forces and the NPA, Duterte has now declared the group a terrorist organisation. Citizens have been asked not to support the rebel group, and the government claims that eight rebels have already surrendered to government forces following the declaration.

Manila airport workers protest privatisation

Airport workers throughout Manila have been protesting against the privatisation of four airport terminals. Workers who are also members of the Samahang Manggagawa sa Paliparan ng Pilipinas (SMPP) union took part in the protest - which marched to Mendiola outside Malacanang to lobby President Duterte. The workers claim that the privatisation could put their jobs at risk. 

Thousands evacuated in town fire, Manila

A fire has broken out in a shanty town near the Manila docks - leading to the evacuation of 15,000 people. Seven people have been wounded during the blaze - which has swept through the Tondo town area of metro Manila rapidly, engulfing over 1,000 properties and lasting for 10 hours. Those who have been evacuated from their homes have been temporarily relocated to emergency shelters. Belongings, such as clothing and electrical goods have been left in a major road - blocking a truck access point to the port. The fire has now been contained.

Five militants killed in military clashes, Sulu

Five suspected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and another has been captured amid clashes with the military in the Sulu province. The Filipino armed forces encountered the ASG militants in the early hours of the morning in Omar town on Capual Island. Seven high-powered weapons were also seized by the security forces. 

Four soldiers wounded in rebel clashes, Surigao del Norte

Four Filipino soldiers have been wounded in recent clashes with rebels of the New People's Army (NPA) in the Surigao del Norte area. The NPA rebels alleged clashed with military troops in Barangay Mat-i in a 15-minute gunfight, from which the rebels fled with several wounded rebels. According to local villagers, the rebels then ambushed the military forces - wounding four soldiers before escaping. President Duterte recently prematurely ended a ceasefire - which had been agreed last year - over allegations that the rebels had violated the temporary peace agreement several times throughout January.

Grenade attack targets Lamitan Hospital

A grenade attack has targeted Lamitan Hospital in Basilan. No casualties occurred as the grenade hit an abandoned building of the Lamitan District Emergency Hospital, however there are significant material damages. Investigations are underway - authorities suspect that militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) were behind the attack, as ASG militants often employ random acts of violence to terrorise local communities. 

Three rebels killed in military clashes, Northern Mindanao

Three Communist rebels of the New People's Army (NPA) have been killed in recent clashes with the Filipino government forces in Northern Mindanao. The clashes occurred in the Bukidnon area of Northern Mindanao. President Duterte announced today that the governemnt was prematurely ending the ceasefire with the rebel forces due to allegations of NPA violation of the ceasefire throughout January. The conflict broke out just hours after the announcement. No government military casualties have been reported.

President Duterte ends ceasefire with Communist rebels

President Duterte has pulled out of the ceasefire with the Communist rebels. Duterte claims that the rebels have already violated the ceasefire  throughout January - killing at least seven Filipino soldiers in clashes. The Communist rebels deny these allegations and announced that they planned to formally end the ceasefire on 10 February, however Duterte has prematurely ended the ceasefire over the disagreement.

Two killed, two wounded in drive-by shooting, North Catobato

Two people have been killed and two others have been wounded in a drive-by shooting incident in North Catobato. The assailant opened fire on two targets - who they shot dead as they rode past on a motorcycle in the Mlang area. A passer-by and a policeman were also wounded in the incident. The assailant has been detained and will face charges of murder.

Three explosions target mayor, Eastern Visayas

Three explosions have targeted the Mayor of Samar in Eastern Visayas. Two bombs were detonated at properties belonging to the mayor in the San Jorge area of Samar, and a third explosive was thrown at the mayor's main residence in Barangoy Mancol. The assailants are believed to have been riding past on a motorcycle - which they managed to escape quickly on. No suspects have been identified as of yet. While the mayor was not harmed by the explosions, a security guard and a policeman were both wounded. Investigations are ongoing.

Filipino Communist rebels to end ceasefire

Filipino Communist rebels have announced a decision to end the ceasefire with the Filipino military on Friday 10 February. The ceasefire was agreed in August 2016 on the condition that both sides would negotiate the release of political prisoners allegedly held by the Filipino Army. The Filipino military have claimed that the Communist rebels have already violated the ceasefire agreement, with an alleged nine incidents since 28 January. It is possible that the Filipino military may preemptively retaliate to the perceived violation of the ceasefire agreement by the rebels.

Drug suspect killed in police shootout, Central Visayas

A drug suspect has been killed in a shootout with Filipino police forces in Central Visayas. The shootout occurred in Barangay Cambanay in Danao City of Central Visayas, after police responded to reports of two armed suspects in the area. The police intercepted the armed suspects - who appeared to be drug dealers. The gunfight alleged broke out after one of the suspects opened fire on the police forces. Filipino police officials have stated that this was a routine police response call, and not an anti-narcotics operation - which have currently been suspended amid corruption scandals.

Five killed, nine wounded in military clashes, Sulu

Five Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and nine others - including two Filipino soldiers - have been wounded in clashes between the military and ASG militants in the Sulu province. Filipino troops of the Scout Ranger division of the army had been patrolling an area in Panamao town in the southern hinterlands of Sulu when they encountered a large ASG force. The ASG militants engaged in a gunfight with the military troops, attempting to flee after half an hour. The Filipino troops have been pursuing all-put operations against the ASG in a determined effort to release 27 hostages held by the militant group.

Filipino soldier kidnapped on peace-keeping mission in Surigao del Norte

A Filipino soldier of the Peace and Development Team (PDT) of the Philippine Army has been kidnapped during peace-keeping missions in the Surigao del Norte area. It is believed that the solder was abducted by 15 members of the New People's Army (NPA) from Barangay Budlingin in the Alegria area of Surigao del Norte. The NPA armed rebel group allegedly flagged down the troops and forcibly took one of the higher ranking soldiers. The NPA is associated with the National Democratic Front (NDF) political wing, however neither the NPA or NDF have commented on the incident or made any demands.

Suspension of counter-terrorism units to cleanse internal corruption

The Filipino police chief has announced a suspension of the counter-terrorism units to allow for the thorough cleansing of internal corruption. The suspension was decided after the families of victims killed by police officials protested for justice. One of the victims was a South Korean businessman who was allegedly kidnapped and killed by anti-narcotics police. It is generally believed that President Duterte's hardline approach to his 'war on drugs' has influenced police forces to carry out extrajudicial killings - particularly in anti-narcotics and anti-terror operations. 

Two children killed, three wounded in bombing, Basilan

Two children have been killed and three more have been wounded in a roadside bombing incident in the Basilan province. The incident occurred on Sunday in the Danapah village in the Al-Barka area of Basilan. The five children had reportedly been playing in the area when one of them tripped on a half-buried Improvised Explosive Device (IED). Police officials have stated that it is likely that the IED was planted along the trail by militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). It's believed the ASG use the strategy of planting IEDs to terrorise local communities who are not sympathetic to the terror group's cause.

Former radio star killed in drive-by shooting, Calabarzon

A former radio star has been killed in a drive-by shooting incident in the Calabarzon area. The incident occurred in the Barangay Daang Amaya II area on Saturday, when two armed assailants on motorcycles opened fire as they rode past the victim and his wife. The victim's wife was wounded in the attack and rushed to hospital. Police investigations are underway, with the case being treated as targeted killing. This is the second killing of a radio personality within two months - marking the significant increase in gun-related crime since President Duterte took leadership.

Fifteen militants killed in airstrikes, Lanao del Sur

At least 15 militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have been killed in recent airstrikes conducted by the Filipino armed forces. The Filipino military conducted the airstrikes using new FA-50 fighter jets to target known positions held by the ASG and Maute group militants in the Butig area of Lanao del Sur. The Filipino Armed Forces have confirmed that the slain militants have been identified to be members of the ASG and Maute groups, and are likely to have provided a variety of services to the militant groups, including bomb experts, recruiters and religious advisers. Ground operations are ongoing. Military officials have confirmed that no ASG hostages or other civilians were caught up in the operations.

Four militants killed, one wounded in military operations, Lanao del Sur

Four militants have been killed an a militant leader has been wounded in military operations carried out in southern Lanao del Sur province. The operations were a combined effort from air and ground military forces to target a militant leader, identified as Isnilon Hapilon, in the mountainous hinterlands of Butig town in Lanao del Sur. Hapilon managed to escape the assault alive, but wounded. The militant leader is suspected of attempting to establish a new base for an Islamic State-loyalist militant alliance. The militants are believed to be associated with the Islamist Maute group. Military troops have continued their pursuit of Hapilon - those in the area should vacate the vicinity to avoid encountering the violent clashes. 

Mayor's consultant killed in shooting, Cagayan

A consultant of the Mayor of Santa Ana has been killed in a shooting in the town of Cagayan. Oscar Onate was shot dead by two unidentified gunmen on a motorcycle in the Visitacion village area of Cagayan. It is believed that the gunmen targeted Onate and followed him to Cagayan quarry site - which he had been inspecting - where they allegedly spoke with him before they shot him. Investigators suspect that Onate may have known his killers. Police investigations are underway.

Four killed in police anti-drug operations, Maguindanao

Four people have been killed in ant-drug operations carried out by the Filipino police forces in the Ampatuan area of Maguindanao. The former Mayor of Ampataun Rasul Sangki was targeted by the Filipino police in an anti-narcotics operation. The former mayor is currently a fugitive in the Philippines due to his alleged involvement with drug activity. Sangki's company allegedly opened fire on the police forces, prompting a shootout in which four of Sangki's aides were killed. No police casualties have been reported. Sangki's group reportedly fled the scene once police air support arrived. The killings come amid an international cry of outrage challenging President Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs' and alleged influencing of the police forces to carry out extrajudicial killings.

Supreme Court case challenges President Duterte's 'war on drugs'

A Supreme Court case has been filed against the alleged extrajudicial killings of drug suspects carried out by the Filipino police amidst President Duterte's 'war on drugs'. Families of drug suspects who have been killed in anti-narcotics operations have filed a case with the Supreme Court which will challenge Duterte's hardline approach to drugs. Families - supported by human rights groups - have demanded that the police provide adequate proof that each suspect was actively involved in drug activity. The police have claimed that in each incident, the suspects opened fire on the police forces - leading to fatal shootouts. However, this explanation is not widely accepted, and the lack of police casualties in such incidents has raised suspicion, leading to theories that the killings were pre-planned. More than 7,000 suspects have been killed in drug-related incidents within the last seven months. Duterte's government continues to deny involvement with extrajudicial killings and assassinations.

Key homicide witness shot dead, Bacolod

A key witness in a homicide case has been shot dead in the Granada area of Bacolod city. The victim had been a key witness in a recent murder case - in which his statement implicated a dismissed police officer and a standing police officer along with three other suspects. The victim had allegedly attempted to retract his statement after receiving death threats, however the police refused and the victim left unprotected. It's believed that the victim was shot in the head as he was getting out of the shooter's car in Granada. Police investigations are underway, with the victim's killer suspected to be one of the five suspects identified by the victim in his statement. Shooting incidents have increased significantly in the Bacolod area recently - causing many to be concerned over the city's law enforcement.

Two killed, seven wounded in drive-by shootings, Bacolod

Two people have been killed and seven others have been wounded in two drive-by shooting incidents in Bacolod city. The first incident took place on Tuesday evening in Barangay 28, when three people alighted from a motorcycle and were shot at by two unidentified gunmen on a motorcycle. One victim was shot dead, while another died in hospital. The third victim has been left wounded, along with a bystander. The second incident occurred in Barangay 2, when a group of people playing a card game were shot at by two unidentified gunmen on a motorcycle. Five people have been left wounded from the incident - two of whom had previously surrendered to police rehabilitation programs for those involved in drug activity. Police investigations are underway, with officers looking into links between the two cases, as both assailants wore bonnets, rode a motorcycle and used a 0.45mm pistol. It remains uncertain if the incidents were drug-related.

Three killed in shooting, Cagayan Valley

Three people have been killed in a shooting incident in the Isabela area of the Cagayan Valley. Two unknown gunmen approached the residence of the three victims on motorcycles, before dismounting and storming the property. Two people were shot dead at the scene, while the third died from his wounds in hospital. One of the victims had previously surrendered to Filipino police for the sale of unlawful drug medication. Police investigations are underway. It remains unknown if drug activity was involved in the incident.

Public transport drivers to take nationwide strike action

Public transport drivers have announced that 'Jeepney' drivers will take nationwide strike action on Monday 06 February. Jeepneys are a traditional Filipino mode of public transport, which operate in a similar system to public buses. Approximately 74,000 Jeepney drivers will participate in the strike, which will protest against the government's plans to modernise and phaseout old Jeepneys. Drivers claim that the required engine renovations and potential purchases of new hybrid or electric Jeepneys could cost franchises up to 1.6 million pesos. Metro Manila is expected to be worst hit by the strike, with significant travel disruption anticipated. Travellers should avoid large demonstrations, as protests can become violent very quickly.

Four drug suspects killed in police operations, Central Visayas

Four drug suspects have been killed in anti-narcotics operations carried out by the Filipino police in the Central Visayas area. Two operations were conducted by the same team in the Aloguinsan and Minglanilla districts on Tuesday evening. In the first operation, an undercover policemen met with two suspects to trick them into a drug deal in the Barangay Saragosa area of Aloguinsan. One of the suspects allegedly realised the person they were dealing with was with the police, and opened fire. The two suspects were killed in the shootout. The team then moved to Barangay Pakigne in Minglanilla to carry out an arrest warrant, when two suspects allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police - leading to a second fatal shootout. No police casualties have been reported. Concerns have risen recently, that Filipino police forces have been encouraged by President Duterte to carry out extrajudicial killings amid Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs'.

Two wounded in shooting, Western Visayas

Two teenagers have been wounded in a shooting in the Cadiz area of Western Visayas. The incident took place on Monday, near Cabahug street, when the victims attended a school reunion. Another teenager opened fire on the victims with an improvised shotgun before fleeing the scene. Police have detained the suspect, and believe his motive was jealousy - after seeing an ex-girlfriend with one of the victims.

Three drug suspects killed in anti-narcotics operations, Metro Manila

Three drug suspects have been killed in recent anti-narcotics operations in the National Capital Region of Metropolitan Manila. Police forces were serving arrest warrants to the three suspects in the Vista Verde Subdivision Brgy. 167 in the Llano area of Caloocan city in Metro Manila, when the incident occurred. One of the suspects allegedly resisted arrest and opened fire on the police forces, prompting a shootout in which all three suspects were killed. Concerns have risen in recent months, that the Filipino police forces have been encouraged to carry out extrajudicial killings amidst President Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs'.

Earthquake detected in Davao Occidental

A 5.3-magnitude earthquake has been detected approximately 172 kilometres south-east of Sarangani town in the Davao Occidental. The earthquake occurred at 01:17 local time on Saturday, at a depth of 98 kilometres. A report from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology stated that the earthquake was thought to have been tectonic in origin, and that no aftershocks are expected, and no tsunami warning will be issued. No casualties or damages have been reported. Earthquakes frequently occur in the Philippines due to the area's proximity to the seismically active 'Ring of Fire' around the Pacific plate.

Three fishermen kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf Group off Tawi-Tawi

Three Indonesian fishermen have been kidnapped by militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the waters off Taganak Island in the Taw-Tawi area. Coastguards and military officials have recently confirmed that ASG gunmen approached on a speedboat and intercepted the Malaysian-flagged fishing boat in the waters near Taganak Island at around 17:30 on Wednesday afternoon. The fishermen alerted the coastguard as soon as they saw the speedboat on its approach, however by the time the coastguard arrived, the fishing boat was empty and had been abandoned. The gunmen are believed to0 have taken the hostages towards the Sulu area - where the ASG are believed to have many hideouts and hostage-holding facilities. Those travelling by boat in the Filipino waters should be aware of the high risk of piracy attacks, robbery or kidnap by ASG militants.

Protests against US politics to take place in Manila

Protests have been scheduled to take place outside the US Embassy in Manila on Friday 20 January. The demonstration - organised by the leftist Bagong Alyangsan Makabayan group - will protest against the inauguration of US president-elect, Donald Trump - due to take place tomorrow. The protest is expected to start sometime between 10:00 and 13:00 and has no set end time. Up to a thousand people are estimated to participate in the protest, with Filipino police forces planning to station security personnel at key points throughout the city. It is possible that a mass protest against western politics in a city where there is already a significant risk of terrorist attack, may attract acts of militancy or violence. Travellers have been advised to avoid the large crowds and to expect severe travel disruption through the city.

Three drug suspects killed in Luzon

Three drug suspects have been killed in three separate incidents across the Luzon province. On suspect was shot dead by two unknown assailants on a motorcycle in . Two unidentified assailants also killed a second suspect in Plaridel, and a third suspect in the Bulacan area. The gunmen allegedly left a piece of paper at one of the shootings, which identified the target as a drug user and a robber. Police claim they have not identified the assailants yet, and have assumed all three incidents to be connected. Concern have risen recently that the police have been encouraged by President Duterte to carry out, and organise, extrajudicial killings amidst Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs'. 

Two kidnap hostages rescued by Filipino troops

Two Filipino nationals have been rescued by Filipino troops after they were kidnapped and held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The two hostages were rescued by two divisions of the Joint Task Force Sulu in the Barangay Tagbak area of Indanan town in the Sulu province. The hostages have been debriefed and the security troops have confirmed that the hostages were kidnapped by the ASG in October 2016, from the waters off Pangutaran in the Sulu province. The hostages were rescued as they were being transferred to an area in Parang Town and were intercepted by police forces. Both have received medical checks and are in stable health. Travellers should be aware of the continued high risk of kidnap in the Sulu area and the surrounding waters.

One missing as cargo vessel capsizes off Leyte coast

One person remains missing after a cargo vessel has capsized off the coast of Leyte. The ship sank in the water near Dawahon Island between the Bohol and Leyte province on Tuesday evening. Twenty-eight crew members were rescued from lifeboats by three other nearby vessels, and brought to the Coast Guard station in Cebu City. The ship reportedly lost balance after 160 20-foot containers collapsed, causing the vessel to start listing on the portside. Rescue operations to locate the missing crew member are underway.

Five dead, three missing in flash floods, Zamboanga

Five people have been killed and three people remain missing amid flash floods hitting the Zamboange del Norte area. The area was recently advised to evacuate ahead of severe weather warnings of heavy rainfall across the region - leading to the evacuation and temporary relocation of around 1,500 people to flood shelters. Of those missing, one is thought to be a seven-year-old boy. It has been estimated that many low-lying areas have experienced flood waters of up to six metres in depth. The heavy rainfall is expected to continue for the next few days.

One killed, one wounded in knife attack, La Trinidad

One person has been killed and one other has been wounded in a knife attack at the La Trinidad Vegetable Trading Post. The unknown assailant allegedly followed the victims before attacking them with a knife near the trading post. The assailant reportedly stabbed both victims repeatedly before fleeing the scene. Police have launched an investigation into determining the motive behind the attack, as well as a manhunt in the surrounding area to identify the attacker.

President Duterte orders bombing of militant groups

President Duterte has ordered the Filipino Armed Forces to bomb militant groups. Duterte has demanded that all militant groups who resist capture should be bombed. Supposedly, those who surrender will not be bombed, however there has been no promise that militants who surrender will be granted a fair trial. Furthermore, Duterte has shown no concern for the safety of the hostages - the loss of whom, he allegedly described as 'collateral damage'. Many have feared that Duterte has encouraged police forces and the armed forces to carry out extrajudicial killings in line with his hardline approach to militancy and drugs. 

South Korean hostage found dead in central Luzon

A South Korean male has been found dead in central Luzon, after he was kidnapped by policemen October 2016. The victim was kidnapped by three policemen and one former policeman under the pretense of a local drug investigation. The four kidnappers then continued to extort approximately five million pesos (USD100,000) from the victim's family in ransom demands. It has become clear however, that the victim was strangled to death not long after his abduction. South Korean officials have urged the Philippine government to conduct a thorough investigation into the incident, and may demand compensation to the victim's family for the crime committed by Filipino government employees.

Thirteen people killed in flash floods

At least 13 people have been killed in flash floods cause by heavy rainfall across parts of the Philippines. The areas of Mindanao and Zamboanga are thought to have been worst affected by the flash floods, with all deaths coming from these areas. Over 5,000 people have been evacuated from Cagayan de Oro City, and the floods have caused extensive infrastructural damage to roads and buildings. Many main roads have been officially closed until further notice as they have become impassable. People have been advised to avoid unnecessary travel along smaller roads, tracks and pathways which may be dangerous. The heavy rain and floodwaters are beginning to subside, however travellers should expect severe disruption to public services, with limited transport options to continue for the next few days.

Philippines government issues note verbale to China

The Filipino government has issued a note verbale to China, detailing the Filipino government's complaint regarding China's alleged installation of defence weaponry on man-made islands in the strategically important South China Sea. China has reportedly installed anti-aircraft and anti-missile defences to guard against attack. The Philippines has issued the complaint as an informal way to notify China that the Philippines disagrees with the building up of weapons systems in the area, and to suggest an alternative procedure, without inciting a deterioration in diplomatic relations, or worse, war. 

Flooding causes suspension of public services, Cebu

Flooding in the Cebu province has causes a temporary suspension of public services. The Mayor announced the suspension on Monday morning - stating that the public schools would be closed until further notice, due to reports of rising levels of floodwater in some schools. The Mayor stated that more extensive suspensions will be in order should the flooding continue to worsen. Those in the area should be prepared for public transport suspensions and should listen to the local media and news outlets for updates.

One killed in drive-by shooting, Tuguegarao City

One man has been killed in a drive-by shooting in the Centro Uno village of Tuguegarao City. The victim was allegedly shot seven times by teo unidentified gunmen on motorcycles. Police suspect the incident could have been drug-related, due to the discovery of what is thought to be 'Shabu' (methamphetamine hydrochloride), and significant sums of cash in the victim's pockets. Police investigations are ongoing.

One killed, one wounded in roadside bomb explosion, Basilan

One person has been killed and another has been wounded in a bomb explosion in the Sabong village of Lamitan City in the Basilan province. Military and police officials have confirmed that the roadside landmine had been planted at the side of the Basilan circumferential road. Police believe the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) are behind the incident, as the group are thought to strongly oppose the concreting of the road, as it will make it easier for government troops to pursue them into their hideouts in the hinterlands of the Basilan province. Travellers have been advised to take extreme caution if visiting the Basilan area, as the risk of terrorism and kidnap is very high due to the presence of the ASG.

Five people killed over the weekend in Calabarzon shootings

Five people have been killed over the weekend in separate shootings across the Calabarzon area. Councilor Lauro Vicencio, an ex-Army soldier, was killed by an unknown assailant in the Baramgay Pantay Matanda area on Friday - the assailant allegedly introduced himself as an inspector of the Commission on Audit before he opened fire on Vicencio. Nearby, another man was shot dead in Malvar town. The victim was killed by two unidentified gunmen on motorcycles in a drive-by shooting on Friday. Another man was shot dead in a drive-by shooting in the Rizal area on Saturday evening - the assailants were confirmed to be two unknown gunmen on motorcycles. Also on Saturday evening, a man was killed by unidentified assailants in the Barangay Tanagan area of Calatagan in Batangas. Finally, another victim was shot dead by a lone, unidentified assailant in the Barangay Cotta area of Lucena City in Quezon. Police investigations are underway, with investigators treating the cases as unconnected. Those in the areas should be aware that five armed and dangerous assailants may be at large.

One killed, one wounded in shooting, Ilocos

One person has been killed and another has been wounded in a shooting in the Pangasinan district of the Ilocos region. The victims have been identified as a retired soldier and his wife. The ex-soldier was shot dead as his wife was wounded in a shooting carried out by unknown assailants in the Bayambang town of Pangasinan. The victims had allegedly been driving through the town on a motorcycle when gunmen overtook them in a four-wheel drive vehicle and shot them down. Police investigations are underway, however no motive has been determined as of yet and the perpetrators remain at large.

Three women killed in Bulacan province in last 24 hours

Three women have been killed in separate incidents in the Bulacan province within the last 24 hours. Two women have been shot dead in a drive-by shooting in the Plaridel area as an armed motorcyclists opened fire on the women in the early hours of the morning. A woman was also found decapitated and with multiple stab wounds in Santa Maria. Police investigations are underway to identify the perpetrators of the attacks, which are not though to be connected. The motives for the attacks also remain unknown.

Three drug suspects killed in police operations, Bulacan

Three drug suspects have been killed in anti-drug operations carried out by the police in the cities of Malolos and San Jose del Monte. Two suspects were killed in a police drug operation in the San Jose del Monte area late Thursday evening - one of which has been identified as a confirmed drug suspect. Another man has been killed in anti-drug operations carried out in Malolos. The suspect allegedly engaged in a gunfight with police forces during a raid. The man has also been identified as a confirmed drug suspect. Concerns have risen recently in the Philippines that police forces have been encouraged to carry out extrajudicial killings in anti-drug operations as part of President Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs'.

One killed, four wounded in anti-terror operations, Basilan

One Filipino military officer has been killed and four other soldiers have been wounded in recent anti-terror operations carried out by the Filipino armed forces in the town of Sumisip in the Basilan province. The military forces of the Army's 19th Special Forces Company and the 4th Special Forces Battalion had been pursuing Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants in the Cabcaban area of Sumisip town when the gunfight broke out. Reinforcement was called in from the 64th Infantry Battalion and the 3rd Scout Ranger Battalion to block potential ASG escape routes. It remains unknown how many casualties the ASG suffered.

Abu Sayyaf Group release hostage video

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has released a hostage video, threatening to kill German citizen Jurgen Kantner. The video allegedly features Kantner standing in a dug-out grave, as ASG militants surround him, holding up an Islamic State flag. The militants reportedly threaten the German government to adhere to the ransom demands made by the ASG, or they will behead Kantner. The ASG kidnapped Kantner from his yacht in the southern Sulu waters in November 2016. Kantner's wife was killed during the incident. The ASG are believed to be holding 15 hostages altogether, including seven Filipino citizens, five Malaysian citizens, two Indonesian citizens and one German citizen (Kantner).

Village chief killed in shooting, Ilocos

A village chief has been killed in a shooting in the Pangasinan area of the Ilocos region. The victim, Rolando Mejia, had been the village chief of Barangay Calaocan in San Nicolas town, eastern Pangasinan. Mejia had parked his motorcycle to take a call when another motorcyclist driving by and opened fire on him. Investigators believe the assailant then got of his motorbike to shoot Mejia several more times to make sure he was dead. Police believe the attack was a targeted killing and have launched a manhunt for the perpetrator.

Street vendor killed in shooting, Central Visayas

A street vendor has been killed in a shooting in Cebu City of Central Visayas. Two unidentified armed men shot the cigarette vendor in the Colon Saint area of Cebu City. The assailants are thought to have been on a motorcycle and managed to flee the scene following the incident. The victim was reportedly notorious among the police for gun-related criminal activity - leading investigators to suspect the attack was gang-related. 

Bomb scare near National Police headquarters, Quezon City

A fake bomb has been discovered by street cleaners in a street bin near the National Police headquarters in the Camp Crame area of Quezon City. The package reportedly resembled a dynamite bomb with wiring and a timer, prompting concern the package could detonate at any moment. The bomb was removed by the Filipino Explosives and Ordnance Division (EOD), who were called to the scene. It has since been confirmed that the package, although designed to look like a bomb, contained no explosive material no digital wiring was connected. A chief officer of the EOD stated that the fake bomb was similar to props used in police training exercises and that the incident would be investigated by the Quezon City Police District as a bomb scare.

Two ex-policemen killed in anti-drug operations, Davao del Norte

Two former policemen have been killed in anti-drug operations carried out by the Filipino police forces in the Carmen area of Davao del Norte. The ex-policemen were allegedly involved in illegal drug activity and had been on the police's High Value Targets (HVTs) list for a while. The suspects allegedly resisted arrest by opening fire on the police forces - prompting a fatal shootout. The incident is the second of its kind in which former police officers have been killed in the Davao del Norte area. The increased frequency of drug suspects being killed in alleged arrest operations has raised concerns that President Duterte's hardline 'war on drugs' has encouraged the police to target individuals with little evidence and to perform extrajudicial killings. 

Eight fishermen killed in piracy attack off Zamboanga coast

Eight fisherman have been killed in a piracy attack off the coast of the Zamboanga peninsula. Five armed men allegedly attacked the fishing boat as it was operating near the island of Laud Siromon off the Zamboanga peninsula. While eight crew members were killed, seven others managed to escape by jumping overboard and swimming to the nearby island. The attackers managed to flee on the vessel -  coastguards have since launched a search in the area. It is suspected that Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants were behind the attack, as the surrounding waters have become notoriously dangerous due to their activity in the area. The incident has come as the Filipino security forces have been ordered to end Islamist militancy and piracy within six months. The ASG have not yet commented on the incident, or claimed the attack.

Earthquake detected in Celebes Sea

A 7.3-magnitude earthquake has been detected off the coast of the Philippines in the Celebes Sea. The earthquake occurred at 06:13 UTC with a depth of approximately 380 miles. The epicentre of the quake was located 138 southeast of the Sulu province of the Philippines. It is believed that the earthquake was set off by the movement of oceanic plates along the Cotabato trench, approximately 378 miles under the seabed. Due to the deepness of the earthquake, no damages or casualties have been reported and no tsunami warning has been issued, however experts have advised people to anticipate aftershock tremors. 

Earthquake detected near Laoag City, Ilocos

A 4.9-magnitude earthquake has been detected near Laoag City in the Ilocos region. The earthquake occurred at 09:20 UTC, with a depth of 27km. According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, the earthquake was thought to have originated from a tectonic shift. No major damage or casualties have been reported and there has reportedly been no cause for tsunami concerns, although some small aftershock tremors may be experienced.

Two militants killed in police operations, Central Mindanao

Two militants have been killed following an incident in the central region of the Mindanao Island. Police forces had allegedly been carrying out search operations for members of the militant Ansarul Khilafa Philippines (AKP) in the central region, when two suspected militants resisted arrest by throwing a grenade at the security personnel - who responded to the attack with deadly fire. One of the militants has been reported to be a foreign militant - indicating the AKP are receiving assistance, or instruction, from foreign militant groups.

Thousands evacuated amid tropical storm, Siargao Island

Over 6,000 people have been evacuated from their homes on Siargao Island as a tropical storm has hit the island. Tropical storm 'Auring' is expected to move westwards over the next 24 hours, covering the central and southern islands surrounding the main southern island of Mindanao. All southern islands have been advised to prepare for evacuations if necessary. Winds of up to 44mph have been predicted, and the islands have also been warned that the storm will raise the likelihood of flash floods as heavy rains are brought in over the archipelago. Sea travel has also been suspended by the government in some areas. The tropical storm is expected to leave the islands by Tuesday 10 January. Until then, local residents and travellers in the area should remain cautious, follow the advice of local authorities and avoid unnecessary travel unless they have been advised to evacuate.

Traslacion of the Black Nazarene procession takes place, Manila

The annua Traslacion of the Black Nazarene is taking place today through Manila. The procession has recently been the subject of terror threats, prompting security forces to enforce strict security measures throughout thr city. Access to the capital city has been strictly regulated by security checkpoints, and all mobile signal has been turned off, to prevent mobile communications being used by terror networks to coordinate an attack. Hundreds of thousands of people have taken part in the procession, which has occurred without incident so far. Travellers have been advised to expect severe travel and communication disruption int he city, and should aoid large demonstrations where possible.

High risk of terror threat to Black Nazarene procession, Manila

A high risk of terror threat has been issued in advance of the Black Nazarene procession, scheduled to take place on Monday 09 January in Manila. Intelligence has reportedly been received by government officials that terror threats have been made toward the procession. People should expect major road closures, severe travel disruption and increased security presence throughout the city. Travelelrs have been advised to avoid large crowds and to follow the advice of local authorities.

Drug suspect killed in anti-drug operation, Eastern Visayas

A drug suspect has been killed in recent anti-drug operations carried out by the Filipino police in the town of Macrohon in the Eastern Visayas area. Police forces were undertaking a drug raid operation when the suspect opened fire on police officers and started a shootout. Incidents in which drug suspects have been shot down have increased recently, raising concerns that the police have been performing extrajudicial killings in line with President Duterte's hardline approach to his 'war on drugs'.

Four drug suspects killed in police operations, Central Luzon

Four drug suspects have been killed in undercover anti-drug operations carried out by the Filipino police forces in the Barangay Bagbaguin area of Pandi in the Bulacan district of Central Luzon province. The policemen allegedly attempted to arrest the suspects after they sold drugs to an undercover policeman, however a shootout broke out which resulted in the killing of the four suspects. Incidents such as this have become increasingly common in the Philippines, as extrajudicial killings appear to be unofficially supported by President Duterte's hardline approach to the country's 'war on drugs'.

Militants attack Army detachment, 130 residents evacuated

Militants have attacked an Army detachment in the Zamboanga del Norte province, prompting the evacuation of at least 130 residents from the nearby area. Heavily armed militants allegedly attacked a detachment of the Filipino Army's 42nd Infantry Battalion in the Barangay San Vicente area. The militants are believed to have been rogue members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), however no one from the MILF group has commented on the incident, or claimed responsibility for the attack. The residents have been temporarily transferred to the government gymnasium in the town of Sirawai. No civilian, militant or military casualties have been reported so far.

Terror suspect killed in police operations, Sarangani

A top terror suspect has been killed and three others have been arrested in counter-terrorism operations carried out by the Filipino police forces in the town of Kiamba in the Saragani province. Counter-terrorism police officers had been arresting four terror suspects when one of the detainees allegedly resisted arrest - resulting in his death as he was shot dead by police officers. The dead suspect has been identified as a top leader of the Islamic State-loyalist 'Ansar Al Khilafah Philippines' militant group. Counter-terrorism operations are often violent and deadly in the Philippines due to President Duterte's hardline approach - which has raised concerns recently over the state of corruption within the Filipino security forces due to an increase in alleged extrajudicial killings.

Drug suspect killed in drive-by shooting, Western Visayas

A major drug suspect has been killed by six unidentified assailants on motorcycles in a drive-by shooting in the Barangay Lalong area of Calatrava town in Western Visayas. Principles Vicera, 36-years-old, was the top drug suspect on the local police's drugs target list.  Police are currently investigating gang-related motives behind the attack. However, some reports have speculated that the killing may have been orchestrated by hitmen commissioned by the government as part of President Duterte's 'war on drugs'.

Five killed, three wounded in anti-drug operations, Central Luzon

At least five drug suspects have been killed and three police officers have been wounded in anti-drug operations carried out by the Filipino police forces in the Camiling area of Tarlac in Central Luzon. Police officers had a warrant for Enrico Gil Magarde's arrest for possession of firearms, explosives and illegal drugs. Magarde and his accomplices opened fire on the police forces when they raided his hideout in the Barangay Cacamilingan Norte in Camiling. Police forces often undertake anti-drug operations in the province - which can often become violent.

Abu Sayyaf Group suspect killed in military operation, Basilan

An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) suspect has been killed in military operations carried out by the Filipino Army in the Barangay Sapah Bulak area in Sumisip, Basilan. Military officials have confirmed that soldiers conducted an operation in which military forces clashed with the group of militants - believed to be associated with the ASG. The clash led to the death of one militant, whilst the rest of the militant group fled. People in the area should be aware of the high risk of violence whilst counter-terrorism operations are being carried out by the military.

Six killed, 150 prisoners escaped in Mindanao jailbreak

Six prisoners have been killed and approximately 150 other have escaped during a jailbreak at North Cotabato District Jail near Kidapwan city on Mindanao island. A group of gunmen allegedly opened fire on the prison, starting a gunfight which would last two hours. In the confusion, prisoners stacked bedding against the back wall of the prison in order to escape. Most escapees are throught to be opportunists, however police suspect the attack was staged by Islamist rebels as a distraction to free a number of jailed rebels. The police have launched a joint searching-operation with the Filipino military to hunt down the escapee prisoners in the surrounding area. Those in the surrounding area should be cautious of dangerous criminals on the loose and have been advised to report an suspicious sightings to the local authorities.

Attempted seajacking foiled by Filipino Navy, Basilan

An attempted seajacking has been foiled by the Filipino Navy off the coast of Basilan. The incident occurred near the Sibago island - where the Navy responded to distress calls of a hijacking attempt from the ship. Six armed militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) had been attempting to hijack a container vessel on its way from Zamboanga City to Davao City. The ASG militants aborted the hijacking attempt and are thought to have fled towards the Moro Gulf. No casualties have been reported and the 28-member crew has been praised for quick thinking and vigilance in alerting the Navy to the incident. Ships and crew have been advised to take extreme caution when travelling these routes, as the ASG is known for attacking ships sporadically throughout the waters in the Basilan, Zamboanga and Sulu areas.

Dozens wounded in IED explosions, Leyte

At least 33 people have been wounded as two Improved Explosive Devices (IEDs) exploded during a boxing match in the town of Hilongos in the central province of Leyte. It is believed the assailants detonated the IEDs from mobile phones and fled the scene. The boxing match was part of Roman Catholic holiday festival celebrations, and is the second attack of its kind on civilians within the last week, after a bomb attack wounded 16 people on Christmas Eve. Police investigations have found no evidence to link the attacks, however it is suspected that a separate group of Islamic militants were behind the boxing match attack. Travellers to the Philippines have been advised to take extreme caution during the Christmas and New Year holiday season.


Seven wounded in roadside bombing, North Cotabato

Seven people have been wounded in a roadside bombing in the Barangay Pahangan area of Aleosan town in North Cotabato. Two Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were remotely detonated on the Davao-Cotabato highway as a hauler truck passed by. The driver, the driver's helper, and five hitchhikers they had picked up were all wounded by shrapnel from the IEDs. The Islamic State-loyalist Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) are thought to be behind the attack, as such incidents are often attributed to the outlawed BIFF militants.

Dozens wounded in bomb explosions, Leyte province

At least 33 people have been wounded in two bomb explosions at an amateur boxing match in the town of Hilongos in the Leyte province. The boxing match had been part of an annual Roman Catholic holiday festival celebration. Th assailants were thought to have detonated the bombs via mobile phones, and managed to flee the scene unidentified. Police investigators believe the perpetrators may have been Islamic extremists targeting Catholicism - a minority religion in the Philippines. 

Sixteen wounded in church bombing, North Cotabato

At least 16 people have been wounded in a church bombing in the North Cotabato province. Two armed assailants allegedly threw a grenade at the Catholic Sto. Niño church in Midsayap town, North Cotabato province. Police investigations believe that the attack was intended to target police officers who had been near the church at the time. 

Storm Nina to develop into a typhoon

Storm Nina is predicted to intensify and develop into a typhoon. The typhoon is expected to hit north-eastern island of Catanduanes by Christmas Day. The town of Virac has been predicted to be particularly effected by the severe weather conditions, as the Filipino government has issued an imminent threat of danger to the area. Travellers have been advised to avoid all but necessary travel and to stay away from the coastal areas. 

Four drug suspects killed in police operations, Calabarzon

Four drug suspects have been killed in police operations in Calamba City in the Calabarzon region. Anti-narcotics police were carrying out raids and making arrests when the suspects opened fire on the police forces  and prompting a fatal shoot out. The police forces seized a cache of weapons and a large supply of narcotic drugs from the property. No civilian or police casualties have been reported.

Avoid all unnecessary travel to the Sulu Archipelago and Sulu Sea

The US Embassy has issued a travel warning to avoid all unnecessary travel to the Sulu Archipelago and the southern Sulu Sea. The warning has been issued amidst the increasing risk of kidnap and piracy from the militant Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) - who have a significant prominence in the area. Since January 2016, at least 13 separate cases of kidnap have been reported in the area. Most recently, four Filipino fisherman are feared kidnapped by the ASG near the southern Sulu Sea, when their vessel was found abandoned and stripped of radio or GPS equipment. 

Four Filipino fishermen feared kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf Group

Four Filipino fishermen are feared to have been kidnapped by militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Celebes Sea off the coast of Sulu. The Filipino military have undertaken immediate searched for the four missing fishermen after reports came in of an abandoned vessel, found in the Celebes Sea. Two crewmen, a skipper and a mechanic are missing and the vessel's radio and GPS equipment were also gone - prompting concerns that the men had been kidnapped. The Sulu province and surrounding waters have been an ASG stronghold with frequent incidents occurring. Search operations are being conducted in the Sulu province - where ASG militants are known to be holding other hostages in jungle encampments.

Two killed, seven wounded in shootings, Bacolod

Two people have been killed and seven others have been wounded in shootings in Bacolod City. The first incident occurred in the Barangay 28 area - where two people were shot at and killed, and two others were wounded by two gunmen on a motorcycle. The second incident occurred a matter of mere minutes later in Barangay 2 - where five people were wounded by two gunmen on a motorcycle. Police are investigating links between the two shootings, as witnesses' descriptions of the gunmen correspond and the same type of gun was used in both cases. Those in the area should be on high alert as the gunmen remain loose in the city and are armed and dangerous.

One killed in drive by shooting, Bicol

A newspaper publisher has been killed in a drive by shooting in the Catanduanes area of Bicol province. The victim had recently published an article criticising the government's carelessness in allowing a meth lab to operate from the province, when a gunman on a motorcycle opened fire on the publisher. The assailant managed to escape from the scene and has not been identified as of yet. It has been reported that pro-government or Chinese criminals could be responsible for the attack if the motive is found to be related to the recently published article - which criticised the government and local Chinese residents as being responsible for meth labs operating from the area.

One wounded in explosion, Basilan

One person has been wounded in an explosion in the village of Sabong near Lamitan City in the Basilan province. An Improvised Explosive Device (IED) was detonated near a family farm. Filipino police have attributed the IED explosion to militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), as it is believed the ASG have been trying to target vehicles and soldiers patrolling the area. Local residents and travellers should be aware of the increasing risk of violent clashes in the area, between the Filipino security forces and the ASG.

One killed, eight arrested in anti-drug operations, Davao del Norte

One drug suspect has been killed and eight others have been arrested in anti-drug operations carried out by Filipino security forces in the Santo Thomas area of the Davao del Norte province. Search operations were carried out by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and the Davao del Norte Provincial Police Office Public Safety Command - resulting in the arrests of nine suspects. One of the detained suspects was killed when he attempted to break free and opened fire on the security forces. The seized drugs are being analysed by the laboratory service of the PDEA-Davao for quantitative and qualitative assessment, with current street value estimations of around PHP1.9 million (GBP30,000 or USD38,000).

Strengthened security against Abu Sayyaf militants in Sulu province

The Filipino police and military forces have announced that strengthened security measures will be deployed for health workers in the Sulu province, as a precautionary measure against the threat of kidnap from the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). Approximately 7,000 security personnel have been deployed to the area, where the ASG have been holding at least 23 hostages ransom.

Three drug suspects killed in drive-by shooting, Laguna

Three drug suspects have been killed in a drive-by shooting in the Barangay Aplaya area of Santa Rosa City in the Laguna province. The drug suspects were shot down in front of a store by four assailants on motorcycles. The three drug suspects were on Police watchlists and were also believed to have been involved in robberies. The assailants managed to escape from the scene, with Police investigations underway. It is suspected that the killing was a result of inter-gang violence.

Two drug suspects killed, three arrested, Central Luzon

Two drug suspects have been killed, and three others have been arrested in separate incidents in Central Luzon province. The suspects have both been identified as top drug suspects wanted by the police. Jovette Talens was killed in the village of Niyugan during a raid carried out as part of a joint operation between the Public Order, the Safety Battalion and the Provincial Intelligence Bureau. Reagan Ligon Mesde was also killed during a raid on his house - Mesde's brother and two others were also arrested. Weapons have been seized and no civilian or security forces casualties have been reported. Travellers in the Philippines have been advised to anticipate intense clashes between security forces and drug criminals.

Foreign terrorists being harboured by ASG and Maute group, Mindanao

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and the militant Maute group in the Philippines are believed to be harbouring foreign terrorists in southern and central Mindanao. A Filipino military official confirmed the information today, however it has not yet been confirmed how many foreign terrorist groups the military believe are being harboured in the areas. Ground forces have been deployed on clearing operations to neutralise the opposition before the threat further develops. Travellers have been advised to avoid areas affected by the conflict between Filipino militant groups and the Philippines government - particularly the Mindanao and Sulu areas, where the ASG frequently operates and there is high risk of kidnap.

Police security to increase over the holiday season

The Philippine National Police has confirmed that there will be intensified police security in main towns and cities during the holidays season. Crowded public places such as churches, malls, ports, markets and public transport terminals will be secured with strengthened security measures. Travellers should expect frequent security checkpoints and should ensure they are always carrying the appropriate travel documents.

Abu Sayyaf release two hostages, Sulu

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has released two hostages to the Filipino military forces in the region of Sulu. The returned hostages have been identified as 62-year-old Mohammad Nazer and 32-year-old Robin Peter - who are the last of seven crew members to be released after they were kidnapped in June 2016. The Filipino military has attributed the ASG's decision to release the victims to President Duterte's hardline approach to exterminating the ASG militants. Mohammad and Peter have been transferred for medical examination.

Thirteen killed, 27 wounded in clashes with Abu Sayyaf, Patikul

At least 13 people have been killed and 27 others have been wounded in clashes between the Filipino military forces and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants. The military engaged in an almost two-hour-long firefight with approximately 150 ASG militants in the Patikul village of the Sulu province. The ASG were thought to have suffered 10 fatalities and six casualties, whilst the military are thought to have suffered three fatalities and 21 casualties. President Duterte has ordered a strict approach to exterminating the ASG forces in the Philippines - which has resulted in various violent clashes across the country. Travellers have been advised to avoid ASG stronghold areas, such as the Sulu province, as there is a high risk of violence.

President Duterte signs proposal to amend Filipino constitution

President Duterte has signed an executive order propsal to amend the Filipino consitution. The proposed amendment plans for the presidential style of government - established under authoritarian dicatcor Marcos Ferdinand - to be replaced by a federal style of government. President Duterte has announced that if the federal system can be set up within two years, then he will stand down as president - allowing more democratic elections for the new government to take place. The reforms will allegedly boost the Filipino economy and stabilise conflicted areas in the country.

Improvised Explosive Device found in Bulacan

An Improvised Explosive Device (IED) has been found in the Barangay area of Bulacan. The IED has been confirmed to be very similar to another IED found in a rubbsih bin near the US Embassy in Manila last week, as both devices have used similar 81mm mortar rounds. The IED has been safely detonated by the Explosive Ordnance Division of the Bulacan Provincial Police Office. Four militant suspects have been arrested in association with the IED discovered outside the US Embassy.

Three wounded in City Plaza bombing, Mindanao

Three people have been wounded in a bomb explosion outside the City Plaza, next to the police station in Iligan City, northern Mindanao. Reports have claimed that a hand grenade was thrown at the plaza - investigations into the explosion by Filipino Army are ongoing. No fatalities have been reported so far and no militant group has claimed responsibility for the bombing yet.

Six killed, three wounded in anti-terror operations, Lanao del Sur

Six people have died and three others have been wounded in anti-terror operations against the Maute terrorist group in Butig, Lanao del Sur. One security forces Scout ranger and five Maute militants have been killed, while three more rangers have been wounded in the ongoing gunfight - which has seen government security forces encounter a defensive Maute force of over 100 militants strong. President Duterte's administration has warned militant groups that there will be no mercy if they do not surrender. Travellers have been advsied to avoid the Lanao del Sur region where possible, due to the high risk of getting caught in the fighting.

Vice-president of the Philippines resigns

The vice-president of the Philippines, Leni Robredo, has announced her resignation from President Duterte's cabinet and has promised to lead the opposition party in challenging Duterte's controversial law-and-order policies. Robredo's opposition party had been under professional obligation to respectfully receive the President's policies whilst she had been vice-president. Now that Robredo has resigned, she has become the highest ranking official to take a firm stance against the President's hardline anti-crime policy. Foreign travellers in the area have been warned to expect a rise in political tensions, with the potential for disruptive demonstrations in the capital.

Eight-year-old boy killed in military operations, Basilan

An eight-year-old boy has been killed in military operations against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Barangay Beggang area of Al-Barka town on Basilan Island. The boy was reportedly struck outside his home by an explosion fired in the fighting between the ASG militants and the Filipino military. It is not yet known which side the explosion responsible for the boy's death was fired from. The Filipino military have promised to investigate the issue and have warned local residents and travellers to anticipate violence whilst militants remain in the area.

Imminent threat of terror issued in Pangasinan

The terror alert in Pangasinan has been raised to Level 3: Imminent threat. The heightened state of alert has come after the arrests of two terror suspects linked to the failed bombing attempt on the US Embassy in Manila on 28 November. Security measures will be reinforced throughout the capital city and in areas terrorist attacks are likely to occur - such as popular tourist sites. Travellers should expect more thorough security checks, plan journeys to allow more times for checks and report any suspicious behaviour to the security authorities.

One killed in armed robbery, Laguna

One woman has been killed in an armed robbery in the Riverina subdivision of San Rafael village in San Pablo City of the Laguna province. The woman, a dentist, was shot when she tried to intervene the armed assailants attempts to rob her family, and later died in hospital. The robbers remain unidentified as of the moment, with police investigating the incident. 

Four killed in drive by shooting, Pangasinan

Four people have been killed in a drive by shooting in the Barangay Malanay area of Santa Barbara in the Pangasinan province. The main target of the attack has been confirmed by Filipino police as the Barangay village chairman, Cecelio Garcia-Ballesteros. The chairman's son, brother and brother-in-law have also been killed in the attack. The gunmen drove by on a motorcylce, shooting at close range. Investigators have no yet uncovered the motive behind the attack but believe it could be gang-related as the chairman was vocal in anti-drug campaigns. Police have warned local residents and travellers in the area to avoid involvement in gang-crime and to report any suspicious sightings.

Bomb checkpoints re-installed throughout Manila

Bomb checkpoints have been re-installed throughout Metro Manila after a bomb was discovered in a rubbish bin outside the US Embassy earlier in the week. The checkpoints will be carrying out thorough security checks and strategic points in the city. The checkpoints will be mobile checkpoints, moving station daily. Travellers should expect some traffic delays where checkpoints are installed, and should expect the location of hold ups to change day-to-day.

Piracy warnings issued to ships in the Sulu and Celebes Seas

Warnings have been issued to ships sailing in the Sulu and Celebes Seas, of high levels of piracy, armed robbery and kidnap and ransom. Commercial shipping companies have been advised by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office to exercise extreme caution when travelling through these waters. 

Protest to take place in Manila

A protest has been confirmed to be scheduled to take place in Manila on Wednesday 30 November. The demonstration is expected to last from 8.00am to 5.00pm local time. Protesters will rally from Plaza Lawton to the US Embassy and the People's Power Monument. The motive behind the protests has not yet been confirmed, however travellers are advised to avoid the demonstrations and expect traffic disruptions in the capital city.

Forty killed and 20 wounded in militant clashes, Lanao del Sur

Approximately 40 Maute Group militants have been killed and 20 Filipino soldiers have been wounded in clashes with the Filipino Army in the Butig area of Lanao del Sur in the Mindanao region. The fight begun over the weekend and continues as Filipino forces re-capture areas occupied by the Maute Group, including an abandoned municipal town hall. People have been advised to be on alert for breakaway militant groups seeking to hideout in nearby areas.

Two militants killed and one wounded in police clashes, Tungawan

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed and one ASG leader has been wounded in clashes with the Filipino police. At least seven ASG militants have allegedly attempted to ram a police checkpoint in Tungawan town of the Zamboanaga Sibugay province in the Mindanao region of the Philippines. The leader of the group, identified as Roger Tiguan, has been wounded in the subsequent clashes and has fled the scene with four other militants. People travelling in the area are advised to be on alert for militant activity.

Nine wounded in bomb attack, Marawi City

Nine people have been wounded in a bomb attack, targeting President Duterte's visit to Marawi City in Lanao del Sur, of the Mindanao province. Seven members of the Philippines presidential security guard and two Filipino soldiers were wounded in the blast at around 10.30am local time, ahead of the president's visit. People in the area have been warned to stay on alert for further attacks throughout the day.

Two Abu Sayyaf militants killed, Zamboanga City waters

Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants have been killed in a clash with the Philippine Navy just outside of the Zamboanga City waters. The Navy had been patrolling in the Barangay Muti area off the coast of Sitio Niyog when the ASG militants were spotted and identified on a motorised speedboat nearby.  The Philippines Navy forces have been on high alert for ASG militants responsible for multiple kidnappings in the waters between the Philippinbes, Indonesia and Malaysia. 

Five fishermen missing, Scarborough Shoal

Five Filipino fishermen have gone missing after sailing from the disputed Scarborough Shoal last week. The fishermen reportedly set sail during bad weather after news of an incoming typhoon prompted them to leave the Chinese controlled area. Other boast and ships sailing in the surrounding waters have been alerted to watch out for the men and their vessel. Chinese authorities have been requested to assist in search efforts. The disappearances are not though to be associated with kidnapping groups at the moment, however it has not been ruled out completely.

Eleven killed, seven wounded in militant clashes, Mindandao

At least 11 people have been killed and seven others have been wounded in clashes between the Philippines' Army and an Islamic State (IS) loyalist militant group. The IS militants have been identified as the Maute Group - who claim to have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The ISIL faction had taken over parts of a municipality in Lanao del Sur in the southern Mindanao province. The IS militants have reportedly raised an ISIL flag in an abandoned town hall as the fighting continues. At least four soldiers have been wounded in the clash. Travellers and civilians have been advised to avoid the area completely.

Bomb defused near US Embassy, Manila

A bomb has been discovered and defused near the US Embassy in Manila. The Improvised Explosive Device (IED) has been found in a trash bin near the embassy and has now been defused by the police in a controlled explosion. The IED was allegedly similar to another device used in an attack in Davao earlier this year, which killed 14 people. Investigations are ongoing, with the incident being treated as a terrorist attack attempt.

Thousands protest former dictator's burial

Thousands of people have gathered in Manila to protest the burial of former dictator, Marcos Ferdinand, in a heroes' cemetery. President Duterte's decision to allow Ferdinand to be buried in a respected cemetery has been taken as an insult by those who were victims of Ferdinand's authoritarian regime. Dozens of university students also protested nude. The protest has been peaceful so far with no casualties reported.

Five killed, one wounded and one arrested in drug incidents

Five drug dealers have been killed and one more has been wounded in various drug-related incidents across the Philippines. Two suspects have been shot in Las Pinas City by an unknown assailant riding a motorcycle. Two others have been killed and one person was wounded in a shoot out in a restaurant in Barangay Talon Singko. One more drug suspect has also been killed in Barangay Bayanan.

Five killed, three wounded in military operations, Maguindanao

Five people have been killed and three others have been wounded in a clash between the Filipino military and militant groups in Talitay, Maguindanao. Four Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) militants and one Filipino Army Special Forces personnel died in the cross-fire, and three militants of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have been wounded. The BIFF originated as a breakaway group from the MILF, and both have been suspected to be in close connection with the Daesh militant group. 

Abu Sayyaf Group demands $10m ransom for German national

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) issued a ransom demand for a German national, Juergen Kantner, abducted by the group last week. The ASG demanded PHP 500 million ($10m). The ASG did not issue a time limit on payment or any threat of violence, torture or death if the ransom was not paid. The Filipino military allegedly doubt whether or not Kantner is still alive.

Twenty-three kidnapper suspects identified

Twenty-three Filipino nationals were identified as kidnapper suspects by Malaysian authorities. The Philippines government committed to trilateral international efforts to catch kidnappers operating in the waters between Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. Filipino officials promised to collaborate with Malaysian officials to bring the identified suspects to justice. Six of the identified suspects already had arrest warrants issued by the Philippines government, and 16 others were being pursued by Filipino police.

Thousands to protest against Ferdinand Marcos' burial, Luneta

Reports indicate that thousands of people plan to protest against the burial of former dictator, Ferdinand Marcos. People were outraged when Marcos was given a formal burial at Libingan ng mga Bayani in Taguig City last week, as it was seen as a slight to thousands of people who were victims of his authoritarian regime. The protest was due to take place in Luneta, Liwasang Bonifacio, Mendiola or Makati at around 16:00. The protest is expected to be peaceful, however, those in the area should be aware fo the potential for violence to break out. Travellers were also advised to expect traffic disruptions.

High threat of terrorism in the Cebu province

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued a high threat of terrorism for the Cebu province. The FCO advised against all but essential travel to the region, which includes Dalaguete and Badian.

Fourteen killed in clashes with Abu Sayyaf Group

At least 14 people were killed and nine others wounded in military clashes with the militants of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The shoot-out killed approximately 10 ASG militants and four Filipino soldiers in the village of Buhanginan near Patikul town in the Sulu Province - an ASG stronghold. The military planned the attack on 150 ASG militants after a freed Filipino captive provided key intelligence regarding ASG operations. The ASG was reported to still hold at least 22 captives, including Dutch, German, Indonesian, Malaysian, Vietnamese and Filipino nationals.

Four soldiers wounded in bomb explosion

Four Filipino soldiers were wounded when a bomb exploded on a routine area patrol in the Barangay Sabong area of Lamitan City, Mindanao province. The wounded received medical attention soon after the explosion, with no civilian casualties. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack as of yet.

Philippines may withdraw from the International Criminal Court

The Philippines might withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), following Russia's official withdrawal. President Duterte faced criticism through the court from western states over 'extrajudicial' killings in his crack down on drug crime. The president reportedly stated that withdrawal was on the cards because the ICC was useless and wouldn't listen to, or understand, the reasoning behind the drug war in the Philippines.

Four-hundred migrants deported to Philippines

Four-hundred undocumented Filipino migrants have been deported from Sabah in Malaysia, back to the Philippines. The Malaysian State National Security Council placed the 400 migrants on the MV Lady Mary Joy 3, in a mass-transit operation which was delayed after the original vessel scheduled to take the illegal migrants sank on September 22.

BIFF militant killed in shootout in Mindanao

Mohammad Nur Hassan was killed in a shoot out with Philippines security forces in North Cotabato province, Mindanao. The man was a bomb maker known to be linked with the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). Hassan was shot after he opened fire on security forces in what started as an arrest operation. A PHP1.2 million ($24k) bounty was on Hassan's head, dead or alive, for his involvement in developing Improved Explosive Devices.

Abu Sayyaf Group releases Filipino hostage

Philippines government employee, Elmer Ybanez Romoc, was released today after he was kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) with his wife and son in August. Romoc's wife was released earlier in the year, however their eight year-old son remains a hostage of the ASG in Sulu. It is not yet clear whether or not a ransom was paid.

Drugs seized at Manila Airport

Manila Airport security seized 4.6kgs of Cocaine. Twenty-two year-old Malaysian, Nasiruddin Bin Mohd Hasnan, came from Kuala Lumpur and was en route to Togo with 216 pellets of high grade Cocaine hidden in chocolate canisters. The drugs have a street value of over 23 million pesos ($469,000). The Philippines government commenced a brutal crack-down on the illegal drug trade this year which has killed 1,300 in police anti-drug operations.

Six kidnapped, one wounded in Abu Sayyaf Group attack

Six Vietnamese sailors were kidnapped and one was wounded in an attack by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The cargo vessel was intercepted in the Basilan strait, an ASG stronghold, by 10 ASG gunmen off the coast of Basilan Island. One sailor was shot and was transported to the local hospital, the status of the other six sailors remains unknown. Authorities warned that the ASG target any type of vessel and any persons sailing in the area should avoid kidnapping hotspots, such as the Basilan strait, where possible.

Abu Sayyaf Group to be beaten by 2017

Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief, Ricardo Visaya, reportedly hopes to defeat the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in December 2016. Visaya is due to retire on 9 December, however, following a series of successful operations against the group, he is allegedly optimistic that the ASG will be finished by the time his retirement comes. 

Malaysian and Indonesian pursuits authorised in Philippine territorial waters

The Philippines government has granted authorisation for Malaysian and Indonesian officials to enter its territorial waters as part of a trilateral effort to tackle kidnappings and piracy in the area dominated by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The announcement follows the kidnapping of a German national, and killing of another last week by the ASG. It is believed that the ASG is still holding another 15 captives - including seven Filipinos, five Malaysians, two Indonesians and a Netherlands citizen.

Earthquake detected in Quezon, Philippines

An earthquake was detected in the Philippines, with a magnitude of 4.9mbw and a depth of 52km. The earthquake occurred at 07:11:05 UTC with the epicenter thought to be located in General Nakar in the Quezon province. Shaking was also felt in Antipolo City, Quezon City, Marikina, Manila, Makati, Tarlac City and San Juan City, ranging from Intensity I to Intensity V. Intensity V shaking means the likelihood of any casualties is very low, however there is the possibility of minor cuts, grazes or bruises from unexpected lighter items falling off shelves. No casualties have been reported.

Philippines not severing ties with US military

The Philippines military will not be severing ties with the US military as previously expected; however, they will be scaling back joint operations and training exercises. Defence Secretary, Delfin Lorenzana, said the security alliance with the US would not be scrapped, but they will reduce the number of activities involving US forces. President Duterte had announced last week that the Philippines would severe ties with the US military after Washington criticised his counter-drug strategy, which has killed thousands of drug suspects.

Bomb hoax in government offices in Quezon City

The offices of the Department of Interior and Local Government, in Quezon City, were evacuated due to a bomb threat which was later revealed to be a hoax. Interior Secretary Mike Sueno, stated that the hoax seriously disrupts their important work schedules and that regional offices had also received bomb threats which similarly never materialised. Impeding government officials ability to carry out their work is likely what those responsible for the bomb threats set out to achieve.

One arrested in association with Abu Sayyaf Group kidnappings

One woman was arrested on suspicion of aiding Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) member in the kidnappings of two Canadians, John Ridsdel and Robert Hall, Norwegian Kjartan Seddingstad, and Filipina Marites Flor, from a resort in Samal Island. The woman arrested was Barangay Chief, Fauzia Abdulla of Barangay Niyog Sangahan - whose arrest was a large blow to the ASG leaders. The arrest came as part of President Duterte's strengthened effort to take down the ASG: a kidnapping force of approximately 350 personnel still holding fourteen hostages.

Convicted Mayor shot dead in prison raid

Mayor Rolanda Espinosa Sr. has been shot dead in his prison cell during a raid. Rolanda handed himself into police after President Duterte ordered his death for involvement in illegal drug-orientated activities. Reports claim Rolanda opened fire on the officers during a firearms and drugs raid, however police also confirmed there was no way Rolanda could have had a gun in his cell, or organised anything of the sort in the short time he was detained. Whilst it is possible Rolanda could have acquired one of the officers firearms to open fire, the death is currently being treated as 'suspicious' with investigations set to look into his death.

One killed, one kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf Group, Sulu

One female German tourist has been killed and another suspected kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). Philippines military discovered the body of a German women on an abandoned yacht in waters south of Philippines. The woman, who is unnamed as of yet, was found naked with gunshot wounds - the shotgun was found near her body - on the yacht docked in the Sulu archipelago islands. A 70 year-old companion, also a German national, is thought to be kidnapped by the Islamist group. One of the ASG leaders, Muamar Askali, claimed they were holding a German after intercepting the yacht in Sabah, eastern Malaysia.

Six police officers suspended for extortion

Philippines National Police Director General, Ronald dela Rosa, ordered the immediate transfer of a police major and five others from Manila to Jojo, after it was revealed they had extorted nearly $20,000 from a Singaporean businessman. The six threatened to post the businessman on a list of drug suspects if he did not make the payment. 

Two drug users killed in police operations, Calamba City

In anti-drug operations, Philippino police obtained warrants to search seven properties on suspicion of illegal drug activity in Calamba City, Laguna province. In two of the properties shooting broke out, in which two suspects were killed in separate properties. Approximately 100 officers were involved in the operation, including personnel from the anti-drug task force and the Philippine Drug Enforcement.

Counter-drug operation launched

Mindanao police have launched a counter-drug trafficking operation. Project Double Barrel Alpha is aimed to tackle high-value targets suspected to be involved with illegal movement of drugs inside the government, military, business and police. The new project aims to reduce killings and instead target the arrests of prominent, high profile individuals engaged with illegal drug activity.

US Embassy issues high risk of kidnap warning around Cebu Island

The US Embassy issued a warning to US citizens today alerting them to the high risk of kidnap around Cebu Island, in particular, the southern region around Dalaguete and Santander; areas highly frequented by tourists and Westerners. The embassy suggested anyone visiting the area should avoid public transport and crowded places, stay aware of personal surroundings and listen to local news for updates.

Philippine rebel leader emerges from hiding to talk with President Duterte

Nur Misuari, Chairman and leader of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), has come out of hiding for the first time in three years after the Philippines Court suspended his arrest warrant for six months in order for President Duterte to host talks with Misauri. The warrant for Misauri's arrest was issued after members of his Muslim rebellion sieged several southern villages in 2013, killing more than 200 people. It is hoped that the talks will be progress towards a calming of tensions between the two sides.

Philippines to buy assault rifles from Russia, following US suspension

In response to the suspension of 26,000 assault rifle sales to Philippino local police from the US over human rights concerns, President Rodrigo Duterte is rumoured to be planning to strike a deal with Russia instead. President Duterte is reported to have said that the Philippines do not need to buy from the US, as they are willing to engage with Russia as an alternative. According to reporters, an unnamed Russian diplomat allegedly told President Duterte to 'come to Russia - we have everything you need'.

Five dead in masked attack, Mandaluyong

Five suspected drug users have been killed in one of their homes by six masked attackers. The attackers broke in and opened fire, killing the five immediately. Police have not identified the attackers yet, however it is speculated that robbery was the motive for the attack.

Seventy ASG militants killed by Philippines military

The Philippines military states it has killed 70 Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants and captured 32 others as part of an operation which commenced in July, 2016. Military spokeman, Col. Edgard Arevalo, stated that 34 other militants surrendered to military pressure in the southern provinces of Sulu and Basilan. President Rodrigo Duterte has committed the Philippines to a joint-strategy with Malaysia and Indonesia in a bid to tackle the threats of piracy, kidnap and general criminality presented by the ASG.

Security forces clash with Abu Sayyaf in Sulu

Philippine security forces have clashed with members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the southern Sulu province.  Two militants were killed and eight soldiers were wounded in the fighting, which took place in Indanan early on Sunday.  Military spokesman Major Filemon Tan Jr. said the 21st Infantry Battalion was attacked by 100 ASG fighters while carrying out operations in Barangay Panglayahan.

Filippino mayor killed by anti-drug police

A town mayor and nine of his men have been killed by anti-drug police in North Cotabato.  Mayor Samsudin Dimaukom of Datu Saudi Ampatuan town was targeted during an operation of Friday.  “The suspects were heavily armed and fired on the law enforcers, which prompted them to fire back,” Chief Inspector Elias Colonia said.  The mayor was identified by President Rodrigo Duterte as one of 150 officials involved in the drug trade.

Local councilor shot dead in Manila

A barangay councilor was shot dead in the Philippine capital, Manila, on Saturday.  Edmund Caranza, 42, was killed by a lone gunman outside his house on M Natividad street in the Calzada district as he talked to friends.  Investigators said a motive for the killing has not yet been established.

Abu Sayyaf Group fighters surrender in Basilan

Eleven members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) have surrendered to the Philippine military in the southern Basilan province.  The group included a sub-leader, Moto Indama, 26, and a 12-year-old boy.  Colonel Thomas Cirilo Donato, commander of the Philippine Army's 104th Sultan Brigade, said the detainees would be sent “for rehabilitation and integration into the mainstream of our society".

Two kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf off Bongao Town, Tawi-Tawi Island

On 20 October, two crew members were kidnapped when alleged Abu Sayyaf militants hijacked a South Korean vessel off Bongao town in Tawi-Tawi island. The vessel was reportedly attacked by ten armed men in a speedboat and the captain of the vessel, Park Chul Hong, and a Filipino crew member, Glenn Alindajao, were abducted. Military units have reportedly launched search operations to try and recover the two men. 

Several wounded during anti-US protest in Manila

Several people have been wounded after a police van rammed into a crowd during an anti-US protest outside the US embassy in Manila.  Police also used tear gas to disperse a crowd of around 1,000 people on Wenesday.  Ten people needed treatment at hospital, while 29 people were arrested.  "There was absolutely no justification (for the police violence)," said Renato Reyes, secretary general of left-wing activist group Bayan (Nation). "Even as the president avowed an independent foreign policy, Philippine police forces still act as running dogs of the U.S."

High alert declared as Typhoon Haima expected to hit

On 19 October, the Philippine government declared a high alert on Luzon Island as Typhoon Haima is expected to hit. The northern coastal, low-lying and mountainous areas have been evacuated and disaster response troops, equipment and supplies have been prepositioned in disaster-prone areas. Some flights and classes have been suspended and the Philippine Coast Guard has banned sea travel and fishing until the storm has passed.

Vice Mayor wounded and bodyguard killed in shooting in Maguindanao

On 16 October, unidentified gunmen opened fire, wounding Samsudin Sangki, the Vice Mayor of Esperanza, Sultan Kudarat, and killing his bodyguard. House owner Melchor Tagle was also wounded in the shooting. Sangki was visiting Tagle when then gunmen arrived and opened fire on the house, killing Harold Kalon, Sangki's bodyguard. Police state that the motive and identities of the three attackers are still unknown and have launched an investigation into the attack. 

Typhoon Sarika kills four in north-eastern Philippines

At least four people have been killed after Typhoon Sarika hit north-eastern Philippines.  The typhoon hit Aurora province on Sunday with 220kmp/h winds and torrential rain on Sunday, knocking out power and toppling trees across the region.  Around 15,000 people have been displaced and an estimated 250,000 left without power.

Anti-drug crackdown has killed more than one thousand people

On 29 September, the Philippine National Police (PNP) reported that 1,296 suspects had been killed and 19,907 had been arrested. The deaths and arrests come as part of Operation Double Barrel, aimed at eradicating drug crime in the country. Thirteen police personnel have been killed and 36 others wounded during the operations, carried out from 1 July to 29 September. Three soldiers from the Armed Forces of the Philippines have also been killed in action, with eight others wounded. 

Abu Sayyaf releases Norwegian hostage

The Abu Sayyaf militant group has released a Norwegian hostage in the southern Philippines.  Kjartan Sekkingstad, 56, was released to the Moro National Liberation Front on Jolo island following the reported payment of a $630k ransom.  Sekkingstad was abducted along with two Canadians and a Filipino woman in September, 2015 from a tourist resort in Davao. Both Canadians were beheaded by the militants earlier this year.

US President calls off meeting over recent insult from Philippine leader

US President Barack Obama called off his scheduled meeting with the Philippine President, Rodrigo Duterte, over a renewed diplomatic downturn. The decision comes after President Duterte publicly insulted Obama over America's concern for human rights violations in Duterte's hard-line war on drugs. Duterte had previously offended heads of state and diplomats; however the latest comments led to a diplomatic embarrassment between both countries. This comes as the US President is in Laos to attend the ASEAN summit, days after the G20 meeting held in China.

Fourteen killed and seventy-one injured in bomb attack in Davao city

Fourteen people have been killed and 71 others injured in a bomb attack at a busy market in Davao city, southern Philippines. The explosion, allegedly caused by an improvised explosive device (IED), took place at 22:00 hours local time on Friday. President Rodrigo Duterte condemned the attack and ordered a full investigation over the incident, which he considers to be terrorist-related. Despite no group having yet claimed responsibility for the attack, Duterte believe the act was carried out by local extremist groups. The region is known to be targeted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), which is the local affiliate of the Islamic State (IS).

Twelve soldiers killed in clashes with Abu Sayyaf

At least 12 soldiers from the Philippines were killed in heavy fighting with Abu Sayyaf militants on Monday. A spokesman for the army has stated that the soldiers were killed while fighting 70 Abu Sayyaf militants near Barangay Maligaya. At least five other soldiers were wounded in the fighting. The deaths reportedly come after the army killed 21 militants, including an influential commander, on Friday and Saturday. President Duterte ordered troops to "eradicate" the militants last week after they beheaded a kidnapped villager who's family were too poor to pay a ransom.

Clashes with Abu Sayyaf injures several officers in Sulu

Clashes between Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) militants and government soldiers caused at least 23 casualties in Sulu province, southern Philippines. At least six insurgents were reported dead, while 17 security officers were injured during the battle in Patikul town. The move comes as President Rodrigo Duterte launched a crackdown on the ASG after they beheaded a Filipino hostage on Wednesday.

Government signs ceasefire agreement with communist rebels

A ceasefire agreement was signed on Friday as part of the ongoing peace talks between the government and communist guerrillas. The Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) agreed to establish an indefinite extension to the ceasefire. The peace talks are being monitored by Norway, where the signing ceremony took place. The deal comes as part of the efforts carried out by the hard-liner President Rodrigo Duterte to re-ignite the peace talks with communist rebels and end the nearly 50-year old conflict that already claimed thousands of lives.

One soldier killed amid clashes with ASG militants in Basilan

Clashes with Abu Sayyaf group (ASG) militants led to the death of one police officer on Tuesday morning in Basilan, southern Philippines. According to the Western Mindanao Command spokesperson, Major Filemon Tan, the encounter took place in Barangay Dugga village in Tuburan town. Three soldiers were also wounded and an unknown number of assailants were shot dead. The casualties come amid ongoing offensives carried out by security forces to oust ASG terrorists from the region.

Ten dead in Manila prison blast

Ten people have been killed after a grenade exploded inside a prison in the Philippines on Thursday night.  All of the victims were inmates, including two Chinese drug traffickers, while the prison warden was also wounded in the blast at the Paranaque City jail in Manila.  Senior Inspector Xavier Solda, spokesman of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, said investigations are underway into incident.  

Four Abu Sayyaf militants killed in clashes with MNLF rebels in Sulu

Four members of the Islamic State-linked Abu Sayyaf group have been killed during clashes with the rival Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF). The clash happened during negotiations over the hostages taken by the Abu Sayyaf on Jolo island in the southern Sulu province. Major Filemon Tan, spokesman for the military in the Western Mindanao Command, confirmed the incident. The MNLF claim to be responsible for the release of 14 Indonesian sailors taken by the Abu Sayyaf in late March. The government of Rodrigo Duterte is set to proceed with the peace deal with the group led by Nur Misuari.

Abu Sayyaf militants kill two soldiers in Sulu ambush

Two soldiers have been killed and two others were injured after being ambushed by suspected Abu Sayyaf fighters in Sulu, autonomous Mindanao region. Western Mindanao Command spokesman, Major Filemon Tan Jr., said that the intelligence officers were on their way to the provincial capital Jolo, when they were attacked by heavily armed militants in Patikul town. The incident comes days after hard-line President Rodrigo Duterte declared a crackdown on Abu Sayyaf militants by carrying out an intense anti-terrorist campaign.

Police officer killed during search operation near Manila

A police officer has been killed during a search operation in Makati city on the outskirts of Manila. Edgar Bumagat and his team were heading to arrest Angelo Tampos, a suspected hit-man involved in the local drug-trade. Tampos was also killed during the clashes. Bumagat is the first Manila Metro Police officer to die since the start of the new government crackdown on illegal drugs across the Philippines. The policies of recently elected president, Rodrigo Duterte, have been generating criticism from several international organizations over the alleged violation of human rights and freedoms through extrajudicial killings.

Grenade attack wounds five in Davao

A grenade explosion on Thursday afternoon left five people injured in Davao, eastern Philippines. Security forces confirmed the attack, which happened in the village of Lamanan in Calinan district. Davao's Mayor, Sarah Duterte-Carpio, said that the incident was 'purely isolated' and ordered the police to open an investigation. Davao City is the hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte, who has openly declared a war on drugs and organized crime across the Philippines.

Soldiers clash with BIFF rebels in Maguindanao

The Philippine army has clashed with Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao province in southern Mindanao.  Three soldiers and at least six BIFF militants were killed in the fighting in Barangay Pamalian, Shariff Saydona Mustapha town.  The 6th Infantry Division called in MD-520 attack helicopters to support the ground operations amid "heavy clashes" on Tuesday. The BIFF is the splinter group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Soldier killed by IED in southern Philippines

A scout ranger was killed and five others injured on Tuesday in the southern Philippines. Army Major Filemon Tan said the casualties were caused by an improvised explosive device (IED), which exploded during several operations targeting Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) insurgents in the region. The two-week-long operations on the Basilan and Jolo islands already has already resulted in the death of two soldiers, while 11 others have been wounded.

Philippines wins South China Sea case against China

The Philippines has won a ruling at an international tribunal against China over rights in the South China Sea.  The Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague said: “The tribunal concluded that there was no legal basis for China to claim historic rights to resources within the sea areas falling within the ‘nine-dash line’.” The ruling is binding but the tribunal has no powers of enforcement, while China has described the ruling as "ill-founded".

Several Abu Sayyaf militants killed in Sulu

A fierce confrontation between Philippine forces and Abu Sayyaf militants led to the death of nine people on Thursday. As the Regional Military Spokesperson Major Filemon Tan stated, the clashes involved over 130 Abu Sayyaf Jihadists stationed in the jungle near Patikul town, Sulu province. Abu Sayyaf is an insurgent group mainly based in the Sulu and Basilan provinces, where militants often carry out kidnappings against foreign nationals.

Scores killed in anti-narcotics operation

Over 30 suspected drug-dealers have been killed during a four-day anti-narcotics operation across the Philippines. At least eight people were shot dead in Manila and 20 others killed outside the capital. Aside from the casualties around $20m worth of drugs were seized by security forces. The country-wide operation was part of the set of policies established by recently elected President Rodrigo Duterte, who has declared a war on drugs. Edre Olalia, secretary-general of the National Union of People's Lawyers, condemned the killings and called for the indiscriminate executions to be halted.

BIFF militants kill two soldiers in North Cotabato

The Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) group have carried out an attack against a military convoy in North Cotabato. BIFF members remotely exploded an improvised explosive device (IED) on a road near a high school in Midsayap town. Two soldiers were killed and one student was injured by the blast. The group's spokesperson said the attack was in retaliation against government military operations in the province of Maguindanao. BIFF was established in 2008 after a disagreement within the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), which demands the independence of the country's Muslim south.

Three Abu Sayyaf militants killed in Sulu

Three members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) were shot dead by security forces in Sulu, southern Philippines. The confrontation happened when Philippine soldiers were carrying out operations at Bud Dawa Bayho in Patikul town. The spokesperson for the Western Mindanao Command, Major Filemon Tan, said that an encounter with nearly 200 militants led to fierce clashes that left 16 government troops wounded. The operation comes as efforts to rescue two foreign hostages taken in 2012 and 2015 by ASG insurgents continue.  Two Canadian hostages have already been killed by ASG militants in Jolo.  

Eight wounded by grenade blast in Sarangani

Eight people have been wounded in a grenade attack in Maasim town, Sarangani province. The incident happened on Monday evening during the Kestebeng Festival - a Catholic celebration - when six police officers and two civilians were attacked by unknown men. No group claimed responsibility for the attack, although police sources suspect local Islamist groups such, as the Adbdullah Maute and the New People's Army (NPA).

Seven suspected robbers shot dead in northern Philippines

Seven suspected robbers have been killed in clashes with police in the northern province of Pampanga.  Officials said the incident happened on the Angeles-Magaland Road in the town of Mexico on Monday.  Police launched an operation after they received a tip-off that an armed group was preparing to rob a company in Pandacaqui.

Abu Sayyaf execute second Canadian hostage

The Abu Sayyaf militant group have executed the second of three foreign hostages captured last September on Samal island.  The beheaded body of Canadian Robert Hall was found on Monday on Jolo island in Sulu province after the deadline for a $18m ransom payment expired.  In April another Canadian, John Risdell, was beheaded by the group, who are still believed to be holding Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad and Filipina Marites Flor.

Philippine army in deadly clashes with rebels in Lanao del Sur

The Philippine army have killed at least 54 suspected rebels in fighting in the southern Lanao del Sur province. Military spokesman Major Filemon Tan said troops had been clashing with Maute rebels - a little-known group affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) - in the town of Butig since last Wednesday.  Two soldiers were also killed and 10 others wounded, while around 2,000 local residents were displaced by the fighting.  Dozens of people were killed in similar clashes back in February.

Seven rangers wounded in Sulu grenade attack

Seven Army Scout Rangers have been wounded in a grenade attack on Jolo island in the southern Sulu province.  The troops were on patrol when an unidentified assailant threw the device at them in Barangay Walled City on Wednesday morning.  Major Filemon Tan, Western Mindanao Command spokesman, said the soldiers didn't open fire as civilians could have been hit.  No group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Local councillor shot dead by armed men in Maguindanao

Hadie Nmli Malaguial, newly proclaimed Councillor of Shariff Aguak, Maguindanao, was shot dead by men armed with assault rifles on Wednesday. Malaguial was attacked in his back yard, moments after his proclamation ceremony. He was a member of the Liberal Party and his family believe that the attack was politically motivated.

Populist mayor wins presidential elections

Rodrigo Duterte has won the Philippine presidential elections following the withdrawal of his opponents.  The populist mayor, who campaigned on an anti-crime platform, said he accepted the mandate with "extreme humility".  During his time as mayor of the southern town of Davao, Mr Duterte was nicknamed "The Punisher" for his tough stance on crime and corruption.

Mayoral candidate among election violence dead

A mayoral candidate in Lantapan is among 22 people who have been killed in election-related violence in the Philippines.  Armando Ceballos was shot dead at his home in Barangay Balila by a group of 10 masked men on Saturday morning.  Elsewhere seven people were shot dead in Rosario town in Cavite province early on Monday morning.  The latest deaths add to the 14 already confirmed since the election campaigns began in January.

Politician targerted by bomb in Basilan

An improvised bomb has exploded outside the residence of the governor of Basilan, an island province located in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The device targeted the house of Jum Akbar in the provincial capital, Isabela City, on Wednesday evening. Reports state that Akbar was not in the house at the time; however her son, Al-Qaid, who is running for governor in the province, was inside and escaped unharmed.  In 2007 Akbar's husband, former congressman Wahab Akbar, was killed in a bomb attack outside the House of Representatives in Quezon City.

Abu Sayyaf release hostage video

The Abu Sayyaf militant group have released a video of the three foreign hostages abducted near Davao last September.  In the video Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad, Canadian Robert Hall and Philippine national Marites Flor were seen pleading for their respective governments to meet the captors' demands.  The militants beheaded Canadian John Ridsdel, who was abducted with the other hostages, on 25 April after a ransom deadline passed.

Army targets Abu Sayyaf kidnappers in Jolo

The Philippine military have carried out a series of air raids against Abu Sayyaf militants in a remote area of Jolo island in the southern Sulu province.  A military spokesman said troops fired artillery and dropped bombs on militant camps, killing at least 14 insurgents.  President Benigno Aquino vowed to "neutralise" the militants after the severed head of Canadian hostage John Ridsdel was dumped near Jolo's city hall on Monday.  Abu Sayyaf are believed to be holding around 20 other hostages, including a number of foreign nationals.

Abu Sayyaf executes foreign hostage in Sulu

The Abu Sayyaf militant group have executed one of their foreign hostages in the southern Sulu province.  Local police said a severed head was found in Barangay Walled City, Jolo, on Monday night.  Dr. Raden Ikbala told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that the victim was Kjartan Sekkingstad, a Norwegian national kidnapped from the resort of Samal last September; however other media outlets claim the victim was Canadian John Russel, who was taken along with Sekkingstad, another Canadian and a Philippine woman.  The group had demanded a $6.3m ransom for each of the hostages to be paid by 25 April.

Seven soldiers wounded in Sulu clashes

Seven Philippine soldiers were killed in clashes with Abu Sayyaf militants in the southern province of Sulu on Friday.  The fighting took place in the village of Batungan when the troop were ambushed while on patrol. Major Filemon Tan, spokesman for the military's Western Mindanao Command, said the militants were under the command of sub-leader Hairullah Asbang.  The group are holding dozens of foreign hostages in the region, including two Canadians, a Norwegian, Malaysians, Indonesians and a Japanese man.

Troops clash with Abu Sayyaf in Basilan

Four Philippine soldiers have been wounded in clashes with Abu Sayyaf militants in the southern province of Basilan.  The fighting took place in the village of Umalon in the Ungkaya Pukan district.  The clashes came after an IED exploded in the nearby town of Lamitan, causing damage to property but no injuries.

Eighteen soldiers killed in Abu Sayyaf clashes

Eighteen Philippine soldiers have been killed and more than 50 others wounded in clashes with Abu Sayyaf militants.  The army said five militants also died during heavy fighting on the southern island of Basilan on Saturday.  "The enemy had the high ground so no matter where our soldiers fled to seek cover, they could still be hit by the heavy firepower and improvised explosive devices," said Colonel Benedict Manquiquis.  The troops were reportedly targeting Abu Sayyaf commander Isnilon Hapilon, who recently pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (IS).

One killed during rice farmers protest in Cotabato

One person was killed and 13 others wounded at a protest in Cotabato on Friday.  Police clashed with rice farmers at the rally in Kidapawan City, which was held to demand relief and subsidies for farmers affected by the recent severe drought.  Norma Capuyan, leader of Apo Sandawa Lumadnong Panaghiusa sa Cotabato, said police started the violence when they used water cannons and fired live rounds; however, the local governor said farmer attack police and social workers.

Indonesian sailors kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf militants

Ten Indonesian crew members have been kidnapped by suspected members of the Philippine-based militant group, Abu Sayyaf.  The crew were travelling on a Taiwanese-owned tugboat, the Brahma 12, from Borneo to the southern Philippines when they were captured on Saturday evening.  An individual claiming to be from Abu Sayyaf contacted the shipping company to demand a ransom - reportedly $1.5m - in exchange for the 10 sailors.

Senior NPA member arrested in Matanao raid

Security forces killed one insurgent and arrested another during an operation in the southern Philippines on Wednesday. Joan Casamorin, known as Alvin, vice-commanding officer of the Guerrilla Front 72 of the New People Army's (NPA) Far South Mindanao Regional Committee, was arrested on charges of robbery, kidnapping and murder. The other militant, identified as Jebjeb, was killed after a gunfight with the military. The NPA is an armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and has been confronting the government since the 1970s.

Police foil bomb plot in Sultan Kudarat

Police in the Philippines have disarmed a powerful bomb in the Sultan Kudarat province.  The device had been left in a suitcase along a stretch of national highway in the town of Isulan.  Superintendent Joefel Siason, chief of the Isulan municipal police, said two men had been arrested on suspicion of planting the bomb.

Militants killed during army operations on Mindanao

More than 40 militants have been killed in army operations in the southern province  Lanao del Sur in Mindanao.  Three soldiers were killed and 11 others were wounded in five days of fighting, which targeted the Islamic State affiliates, Jemaah Islamiah.  "Our troops were able to seize a stronghold of the terrorists on Thursday night," said army spokesman  Major Filemon Tan.

Boy killed and dozens wounded in grenade attack

A six-year-old boy has been killed and 38 other people wounded in a grenade attack in the southern Philippines.  The incident happened at a carnival in the town of Esperanza in Sultan Kudarat province on Sunday night.  Local authorities said they are investigating the suspects and the motivation behind the attack.

Four killed in bomb attack in Maguindanao

Suspected members of the terrorist group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighter (BIFF) killed four people in an IED attack on Tuesday. The device  went off as the victims were passing in a van. According to the authorities the blast was targeting security forces in the area. Despite peace talks between BIFF members and the government, there are still hard-line rebels within the group who carry out isolated attacks.

Radio broadbaster shot dead in Zamboanga

A radio broadcaster was shot dead in his home in Zamboanga del Sur province on Tuesday night.  The National Union of Journalists said Elvis Ordaniza, who was in his 50s, was shot twice in the chest in the town of Pitogo.  He had been reporting on illegal drugs and gambling for his radio station dxWO before he was killed.

Six police officers killed in rebel ambush

Six Philippine police officers have been killed and eight others wounded in a rebel ambush on the main Luzon island.  The officers, who were members of the Regional Public Safety Battalion (RPSB), were targeted by New People's Army (NPA) rebels in the village of Sta Margarita on Tuesday morning.  "We were hit hard by the first burst of fire," interior and local government minister Mel Sarmiento told reporters.

Philippine mayor wounded in pre-election ambush

A Philippine town mayor has been shot and wounded in an ambush in the south of the country.  Mayor Jasper Que was travelling with his two bodyguards when he was shot by a gunman on a motorcycle in the port city of Zamboanga on Sunday morning.  The incident came two days before the official campaign for the general elections in May is due to begin.

Seven marines wounded in Sulu bombing

Seven members of the Philippine Marine Corps have been wounded in a roadside bomb attack in Sulu province.  The troops were travelling in a convoy when the IED exploded near the town of Talipao on Thursday. Brig. Gen. Alan Arrojado, commander of Joint Task Group Sulu (JTGS), claimed that the militant group Abu Sayyaf carried out the attack.

Two NPA rebels killed in Camarines Sur clash

Two New People's Army (NPA) rebels have been killed in clashes with Philippine army troops in the northern province of Camarines Sur.  A military spokesman said the fighting erupted near the town of Caramoan at around 10:20 on Monday morning.  A third rebel was captured during the incident, while the army did not report any casualties.

Militant groups pledge allegiance to Islamic State

Four Islamic militant groups in the southern Philippines have merged and pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (IS).  One of the groups involved in the merger is Abu Sayyaf, which has kidnapped several foreign nationals across the southern Philippines and nearby Malaysia.  The group's leader, Isnilon Hapilon, appeared in a video posted online last week with other militant leaders.

Nine people killed in Abu Sayyaf clashes

A Filippino soldier and eight suspect Abu Sayyaf militants have been killed in clashes in the south of the country.  The fighting took place on the southern Island of Jolo late on Wednesday evening.  In a statement the army said the group are holding several tourists who were kidnapped from a resort in Samal Island in September.

Deadly clashes between rebels and troops in south

Two Philippine soldiers and 13 suspected militants were killed in clashes in the south of the country on Tuesday.  A spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command said fighting erupted in the village of Makalang in Basilan province at around 05:00.  The security forces recently launched a major offensive against the Abu Sayyaf militant group over the beheading of a Malaysian restaurant owner last month.

Typhoon Melor hits the central Philippines

Around 750,000 people have been evacuated from coastal regions of the central Philippines as Typhoon Melor made landfall in the country.  The typhoon struck with winds of around 150km/h near Sorsogon on the main island of Luzon.  Schools have been closed and around 40 domestic flights have been cancelled.

Troops clash with NPA rebels in Negros Occidental

Two suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels and a Philippine soldier were killed in clashes in Negros Occidental on Friday.  Colonel Francis Delfin said his troops were on patrol in Sitio Bugtong Lubi when they were ambushed by 12 armed men.  Another soldier was wounded in the gunfight, although the army said he is now in a stable condition.

Six killed in Mindanao clashes

At least six people have been killed in clashes between Muslim rebels and Christian villagers on Mindanao.  A group of around 30 members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) attacked the southern town of Tulunan on Tuesday.  The town police chief, Senior Inspector Ronnie Dillera, said the incident was linked to a land dispute in the area.

Village councilman killed in Barangay San Isidro

A village councilman has been killed in a shooting in Barangay San Isidro.  Eduardo Alibutdan, 50, was targeted by three gunmen near Sitio Stop Aguinaldo on Sunday. Chief Inspector Roberto Mansueto, police chief of the town of Toboso, said three suspects have been identified in connection with the attack.

Eight rebels killed by security forces in Sultan Kudarat

Eight suspected rebels have been killed in a security operation in the southern province of Sultan Kudarat.  Members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said the rebels were members of the Ansar Khalifah Philippines (AKP) militant group, which is linked to the Islamic State (IS). The men were killed in a firefight in the early hours of Thursday morning near the town of Palimbang.

Security forces fire water cannon at anti-APEC protesters

Security forces in the Philippines have fired water cannons at protesters during a mass rally against the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in the capital, Manila.  The clashes took place in the Manila Bay area of the city on Thursday morning, where regional leaders are meeting. "These demonstrations will not stop, even if it means we have to go head-to-head against the entire police force and we have to break through all the barriers," Charisse Bernadine Banez, spokeswoman of the League of Filipino Students, told the Reuters news agency.

Muslim cleric shot dead in Mindanao

A Muslim cleric has been shot and killed in Cotabato City in central Mindanao.  An unknown gunman opened fire on Imam Abdulkadir Sumael, 40, in the Purok Islam area of the city on Wednesday.  Elsewhere a four-year-old girl was wounded when a grenade exploded in Kabacan town.  The device appeared to have been targeting a nearby army patrol.

Two Abu Sayyaf militants killed in Sulu clashes

Two suspected Abu Sayyaf militants have been killed in clashes with government security forces in Sulu province.  The commander of Joint Task Force Group Sulu said fighting erupted around 07:30 on Thursday morning in the Patikul area.  No troops were wounded in the gunfight, which lasted for around 30 minutes.

Four dead in Arayat shooting

Four people have been killed and four others wounded in a shooting in the Arayat municipality in Pampanga province.  Local police said the victims were at a house in Barangay San Juan Bano when five unidentified gunmen opened fire on them, while officers later recovered 37 shells from M-16 assault rifles at the scene of the shooting.

Three dead in village outpost shooting

Three people have been killed in a shooting at a village outpost in Barangay San Pablo.  Police said unidentified gunmen armed with automatic rifles opened fire on the post on Tuesday night.  No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

NPA rebels clash with soldiers in Sorsogon

Three communist rebels have been killed and two Philippine soldiers wounded in clashes in the Sorsogon province of Luzon.  Around 15 members of the New People's Army (NPA) battled troops from the 31st Infantry Battalion in the Barangay Tinago early on Wednesday morning. Government forces also seized two AK50 rifles, one cal .45 pistol, two laptop computers and other similar equipment.

Philippines mayor, son killed by NPA

Suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) have kidnapped and killed a mayor and his son in Agusan del Sur.  Dario Otaza and his 27-year-old son Daryl Otaza were found tied up and with multiple gunshot wounds in southern Butuan City on Monday.  They were seized by gunmen disguised as government agents from their home in the city.

Two Chinese diplomats killed in restaurant shooting

Two Chinese diplomats have been killed and another wounded in a shooting at restaurant in the central city of Cebu.  A Chinese man and woman were arrested in connection to the attack, which happened around lunchtime on Wednesday. "We're still trying to determine the motive for the shooting," Chief Superintendent Prudencio Banas said.

Typhoon Koppu kills two in Philippines

At least two people have been killed and five others wounded after Typhoon Koppu hit northern Philippines over the weekend.  More than 20,000 people have been evacuated from their homes and rescue teams have been deployed to reach people stranded on rooftops.  The storm made landfall in the northern town of Casiguran on the main island of Luzon on Sunday, delivering sustained winds of nearly 200km/h.

 

Philippines prepares for tropical storm Koppu

Tropical storm Koppu is heading towards the northern Philippine island of Luzon, gaining in strength as it passes through the warm waters of the Pacific Ocean.  The storm is currently expected to make landfall near Ilagan City on Sunday and could become a Category 4 storm, with sustained winds of 210km/h. "A total of 300 to 600 mm (12 to 24 inches) of rain is expected to be widespread," said Adam Douty, meteorologist at AccuWeather.

IED hits civilian bus in South Cotabato

At least 18 people have been wounded after an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated inside a civilian bus on South Cotabato.  Local police said the device was inside an overhead compartment when it exploded on Thursday.  The bus was in Polomolok en route to General Santos City at the time of the blast.

Four killed in Basilan blast

Four people have been killed and six others wounded after an improvised explosive device (IED) went off in Basilan province on Thursday afternoon.  The device exploded as the convoy of Isabela City Vice-Mayor Abdulbaki Ajibon was passing in the Sunrise Village area.  Ajibon was wounded in the attack, while the deceased where members of his security team.

Tourists kidnapped in southern Philippines

Two Canadians, a Norwegian and a Filipino woman have been kidnapped from a tourist resort in the southern Philippines.  The four were abducted at gunpoint from the Holiday Oceanview resort on Samal Island, Mindanao on Monday night. "It appeared the foreigners were the targets, they were not taken at random," said Philippines army Captain Alberto Caber.

Bomb explodes on passenger bus in Zamboanga City

One person has been killed and 32 others wounded after a bomb exploded on a passenger bus in Zamboanga City on Friday afternoon.  Local police said the device exploded at a bus terminal at Tomas Claudio Street. Chief Inspector Joel Tuttuh said the militant group Abu Sayyaf were among the immediate suspects.

Two police officers killed in NPA ambush

Two officers from the Philippine National Police (PNP) have been killed in an ambush by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Suriago del Sur.  Gunmen opened fire on a patrol car near the Cortes Municipal Police Station on Friday morning.

Three Islamic militants killed in clash with Philippine military

Three Islamic militants were killed on Friday after the Philippine military launched an operation to rescue hostages held by the Abu Sayyaf rebels. This was the second attempt in two weeks. About 300 Abu Sayyaf fighters retreated after the hour-long firefight in the jungles of Jolo. The military has not yet disclosed whether any of the hostages were freed or injured in the clashes, or how many hostages they believe were being held at the rebel camp. Ten Philippine soldiers were wounded in the fighting. The rescue operation was launched after the discovery of the decapitated remains of a hostage, Rodolfo Boligao, were found on a deserted Jolo highway. 

Typhoon Goni kills 10 in Philippines

Ten people have been killed in torrential rainfall from Typhoon Goni which triggered landslides and floods across the northern Philippines. Several were killed when houses were submerged under rocks and mud. Others are reported missing in flooded areas. Thousands of people have been evacuated to higher ground and some domestic flights were cancelled.

Abu Sayyaf hostages escape in Philippine raid

The Philippine army has said two coast guard personnel kidnapped and held hostage by Islamic militant group Abu Sayyaf managed to escape during a raid. The two men fled the jungle camp in the southern province of Sulu on Wednesday night during the two-hour gun battle. The army attacked the camp to free them and other hostages, killing at least 15 Abu Sayyaf militants in the process.

Five communist guerrillas killed in shootout with Special Forces

Five communist guerrillas have been killed in a clash with special forces in the Philippines, a military spokesman has said. The clash broke out on Tuesday near the town of Pangatucan, on the main southern island of Mindanao. It is one of several areas where the decades-old New People's Army (NPA) rebellion is still active. "It was really an ambush but our special forces returned fire," said local military spokesman Captain Alberto Caber, describing the rebel band as about 60-strong. "There were reports of the NPA in the area so our special forces went their to verify," he told reporters. The bodies of five guerrillas were recovered after the clash.

Four suspected Islamist militants escape jail

Four suspected Abu Sayyaf Islamist militants escaped from jail in the southern Philippines, a regional Navy commander said. The four suspects escaped before dawn from the detention centre of Isabela City in Basilan province, about 900km south of Manila, by cutting off the iron grill of their ventilation window with a hacksaw. Two of the suspects were being tried for murder and attempted murder, one was facing drug-related charges and one is being tried for car theft. Security forces have launched a search operation to hunt down the suspects.

Ex-MMA champion shot dead

Unidentified gunmen shot dead a former mixed martial arts (MMA) champion in Barangay Ulas yesterday. Ale Cali, 25, was about to get into his car when he was shot three times in the head by an unknown assailant. Police have yet to determine the motive behind the murder.

One killed, three wounded in firefight with Abu Sayyaf in Basilan

On August 14, Abu Sayaff militants were involved in an intense firefight with Philippine Army soldiers, resulting in the death of one militant, and two others wounded. A soldier was also wounded in the exchange of fire. The incident happened when an army patrol encountered about 15 Abu Sayyaf militants in the Sumisip jungle, Basilan province, at about 05.00 local time.

Abu Sayyaf militants kill two soldiers in southern Philippines

Abu Sayyaf militants killed two soldiers in a market, but army reinforcements retaliated with an assault that may have killed an unspecified number of the attackers in the southern Philippines. About ten heavily armed militants opened fire on the soldiers on Sunday and stole one of their motorcycles before fleeing into the jungle in Sulu province. The victims were in civilian clothes and had pistols but were killed before they could return fire. Army troops later caught up with the attackers and engaged them in a brief gun battle that may have killed some of the militants, Sulu's military commander, Brigadier General Alan Arrojado, said. A military report stated that the attackers belonged to an Abu Sayyaf faction led by Moammar Askali.

NPA rebels clash with troops in Masbate

About 20 New People's Army (NPA) rebels fired on a platoon of Philippine army troops and police on two trucks, triggering a 15-minute clash that left four rebels and one soldier dead in the north-eastern Masbate province. Army Colonel Cesar Idio said the government troops killed four rebels in the ambush in Masbate's Cawayan township. A soldier was killed and three others were slightly wounded. The troops were ambushed as they were returning to their headquarters after arresting two rebels earlier in the day. Additional forces and armoured military vehicles were deployed following the clash. 

Three soldiers killed in ambush

Three soldiers have been killed and 13 wounded in an ambush by the New People's Army (NPA) in Pinupuk town, Kalinga province. The NPA used landmines to attack three trucks carrying 30 soldiers.

Clashes ahead of president's speech

Left-wing protesters clashed with riot police when they attempted to storm barriers ahead of the Phillipine president's final head of the nation address. At least six police officers and protesters were injured in the violence, which saw police use water cannons to push back stone throwing demonstrators.

New MERS case confirmed by Philippine Health Authority

A second case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) has been confirmed in a foreigner who arrived from Dubai. The 36 year old man tested positive last Saturday and has been quarantined near Manila.  

At least 36 dead after passenger boat capsized off Ormoc city port

At least 36 people are confirmed dead and 19 others are reported missing after a motor banca bound for Camotes Island in Cebu province capsized off Ormoc city port. A coastguard spokesman said 118 were rescued from the incident. 

MILF rebels hand over arms in peace deal

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have started to hand over weapons as part of a peace process.  The event in Maguindanao, Mindanao and was attended by President Beigno Aquino and MILF leader Al Haj Murad Ebrahim.  Seventy-five assault weapons were handed over along with the identification of 145 fighters, the first group who will return to normal life with government support.

NPA leader arrested in the Philippines

The highest-ranking leader of the New People's Army (NPA), the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), has been arrested.  Adelberto Silva assumed leadership of the NPA after former CPP chairman Benito Tiamzon was arrested in March, 2014. "He is the overall orchestrator of rebel movements in the entire country. He organises the activities of the rebels," military spokesman Brigadier-General Joselito Kakilala told AFP. "This (arrest) will have a huge impact. This will disrupt their strategic direction and programmes," Kakilala added.

Twin blasts wound 15 in Sulu province

At least 15 people have been wounded after two bombs exploded at a police camp in the southern province of Sulu.  The Provincial Police director, Abraham Orbita, said the blasts occurred at Camp Kasim in Jolo, the provincial capital. "It seems the [first] explosion was set up to draw responders as the target," he said.

Philippine mayor admits links to Davao Death Squad

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte has admitted to having links with an infamous death squad, which is suspected of killing more than 1,000 people in the city since he came into office in 1988. In an interview on the local television program “Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa” Duterte admitted his link to the infamous Davao Death Squad (DDS). "They say I am the death squad? True, that is true,” Duterte said.  He also vowed to "kill" more if he is elected president in 2016. "I do not want to commit a crime but if by chance, God will place me there, you all better watch out. That 1,000 will become 100,000. I'll dump all of you into Manila Bay, and fatten all the fish there." he added.

Dozens killed in Philippines factory fire

At least 31 factory workers have been killed and dozens more wounded in a fire in the Philippine capital, Manila.  The fire gutted the footwear factory in the Valenzuela, with reports suggesting it was started by a spark during a welding job at the building's entrance.  A firefighter told the Reuters news agency that more people could be trapped under debris at the site.

Typhoon Noul makes landfall in north-eastern Philippines

Typhoon Noul has smashed into the north-eastern Philippines, prompting evacuations and warnings of floods and landslides.  The storm made landfall in Cagayan province, bringing with it winds of up to 220km/h. "This is a very dangerous storm. It is the strongest so far this year," said Rene Paciente, head of the Philippines' marine weather department.

Two soldiers killed in clash with NPA rebels

Two soldiers have been killed and two others wounded in clashes with the leftist New People's Army (NPA) rebel group in the southern Philippines.  An army spokesman said the troops were conducting a patrol in a village near Lagonglong town in Misamis Oriental province when they were ambushed by a group of 20 rebel fighters.

Military ends offensive against BIFF rebels

The Philippine military has ended its five-week offensive against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). “After the relentless operations against the BIFF we have achieved our objectives: the neutralization of more than 50 percent of their ranks, the capture of bomb factories, and seizure of enclaves and safe havens in different Maguindanao localities,” said military spokesman Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc.  At least 139 rebels and 53 civilians have been killed in the recent fighting in Maguindanao.

Army kills 14 BIFF rebels in Mindanao

Philippines soldiers have killed 14 guerrillas from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in the south of the country.  The military carried out air strikes and launched a major ground assault against militant positions in the Mindanao archipelago on Sunday morning.   An army spokesman said 13 soldiers were wounded in the clashes.

Police commandos killed in clashes with MILF militants

At least 30 police commandos have been killed in clashes with militants from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in the southern Philippines.  Fighting erupted as the police carried out a dawn raid to arrest a bombing suspect in the village of Tukanalipao in Maguindanao on Sunday.  The fighting is the worst outbreak of violence since MILF signed a peace agreement with the government last year.

One person killed in Zamboanga car bombing

A car bomb has exploded in the southern port city of Zamboanga, killing one person and wounding at least 37 others.  The blast occurred on Friday afternoon at the Fantacy Bar, outside a bus terminal in Barangay Guiwan.  Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco said local authorities suspected that the Abu Sayyaf militant group were responsible for the blast.

Typhoon Jangmi leaves 55 dead in Philippines

At least 55 people have been killed after typhoon Jangmi hit the Philippines, causing widespread flooding and landslides.  More than 110,000 people have been evacuated from central and southern provinces of the country, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC). Jangmi made landfall in Hinantuan in Surigao del Sur on Saturday.

Government agrees one-month ceasefire with NPA rebels

The Philippine government has agreed a one-month ceasefire with the New People's Army (NPA), the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). "The declaration of the suspension of military offensive against the New People's Army will highlight the government's sincerity to pursue peace," said the military in a statement. The ceasefire will begin at midnight on 19 January and end at midnight on 19 January.

Deadly blast hits bus in southern Philippines

At least nine people have been killed and 17 others wounded after a bomb hit a commuter bus in the southern Philippines on Tuesday.  The bus was travelling through the town of Maramag on the island of Mindanao went the device exploded.  Security services have claimed that the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were responsible for the attack.

Typhoon Hagupit death toll hits 23 in central Philippines

At least 23 people have been killed across the central Philippines after Typhoon Hagupit hit over the weekend.  Around one million people were evacuated to temporary shelters in the Eastern Samar and Albay provinces.  Hagupit has now been downgraded from a typhoon to a tropical storm as it heads towards the capital, Manila.

Swiss hostages escapes form Abu Sayyaf

A Swiss hostage has escaped from the Abu Sayyaf militant group on the remote island of Jolo.  Lorenzo Vinciguerra, who was abducted nearly three years ago on Tawi Tawi island, fled as government troops attacked the jungle camp. "He found an opportunity to escape because of the running gun battle with our troops," Colonel Restituto Padilla told the AFP news agency.

Philippines prepares for Typhoon Hagupit

The Philippines are preparing for the arrival of Typhoon Hagupit, which is expected to make landfall on Saturday.  The typhoon, which is expected to be a category 4 or 5 storm when it reaches the country, is currently heading towards the Eastern Samar province.  Schools and offices in the region have been closed and residents living in temporary shelters have been told to go to evacuation centres.

BIFF rebels ambush army convoy in south

Members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have killed an army major and two soldiers in an ambush in the southern Philippines.  The troops were travelling on a road near Datu Piang in Maguindanao when they were targeted by a number of BIFF fighters.  An army spokesman said the rebels opened fire without provocation, adding that the wallets and valuables of the victims were also stolen.

Abu Sayyaf release German hostages

The Islamic militant group Abu Sayyaf have released two German hostages in the southern Philippines.  The group claimed that they received a $5.6m ransom to free Stefan Okonek and Henrite Dielen, who had been held since April.  A police spokesman said that the two were released on Jolo Island and had been transferred to an army camp. 

Abu Sayyaf threaten to kill German hostages

The militant group Abu Sayyaf have threatened to kill the two German hostages it captured in April.  In a statement the group said it would kill one of the hostages within 15 days unless Germany pays a ransom and ends its support for US-led military operations against the Islamic State in Iraq.  The German nationals, Stefan O and Henrike D, were abducted from their yacht in the Palawan province.

Deadly flooding hits Manila

At least three people have been killed after torrential monsoon rains caused widespread flooding across the capital, Manila.   Thousands of people have been evacuated after a river burst its banks in the east of the city, while schools and government offices have been closed.  Government forecasters said nearly a month's worth of rain had fallen overnight as tropical storm Fung-Wong hit the country, which was still recovering from last week's Typhoon Kalmaegi.

Evacuations ordered near Mount Mayon volcano

Thousands of people in the Philippines have been forced to evacuate after the Mount Mayor volcano started erupting.  The alert level has been raised to three on the five-point scale, with scientists warning that a major eruption could occur at any time.  Regional civil defence director Bernardo Alejandro said around 50,000 people within an 8km radius would be forcibly evacuated within three days.

Five NPA rebels killed in Abra clashes

Five fighters from the New People's Army (NPA) rebel group have been killed during clashes with security forces in the Philippines.  An army spokesman said the firefight erupted in the village of Guinguinabang in Abra province on Thursday morning.  Lt. Col. Virgilio Noora said that the rebels had been extorting money from local residents.

Car bomb found at Manila airport

Filipino security forces have arrested four people after a bomb was found in a parked van at Manila's international airport.  The device was discovered at the airport's terminal three car park at around 01:45 local time on Monday; however, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said that there were no ongoing safety threats for travellers.

Abu Sayyaf kill 16 villagers in roadside ambush

At least 16 villagers have been killed and 13 others wounded in an ambush by suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen in Sulu.  A police spokesman said that 50 fighters ambushed the group in Barangay Lower Talipao at around 08:30 local time.

Philippines seize 11 Chinese fishermen

The Philippine government has seized a Chinese fishing boat and its 11 crew members on charges of catching endangered sea turtles in the South China Sea.  The boat had more than 250 turtles on board when it was seized in an area known as Half Moon Shoal, which is claimed by both countries.  China has demanded the boat and crew be released immediately, and that the Philippines government "stop making further provocative actions".

NPA rebels seize Philippine soldier in Davao del Norte

The New People's Army (NPA) has announced that it has captured a Philippine soldier in Davao del Norte for alleged links to illegal logging in southern Mindanao.  An NPA spokesman said Cpl. Rogelio Rosales of the 60th Infantry Battalion was helping to transport illegally cuts logs when he was "arrested".

Deadly clashes leave 15 dead in southern Philippines

Philippine troops have clashed with rebel fighters in the south of the country, leaving at least 15 people dead.  The fighting erupted when militants from Abu Sayyaf tried to regain control of a training camp near the town of Patikul in Sulu province.

Anti-Obama protesters clash with police in Manila

A group of protesters have gathered at the US Embassy in Manila to oppose a visit by President Barack Obama.  There was a heavy police presence at the scene and water cannons were used to push back the crowds.  Mr Obama is scheduled to fly into the country next week to discuss increasing America's military presence.

Expatriate worker shot dead on Malapascua

A British man has been shot dead by one of his employees on the island of Malapascua over the weekend.  Tony Gilchrist was shot six times by a local man who he had sacked for turning up drunk at work for a second time.  Local police have arrested 42-year-old security guard Melchor Alciso Jr, from Hinundayan in Southern Leyte.

Gonzaga mayor shot dead at town hall

The mayor of Gonzaga has been shot dead by unknown gunmen after a flag-raising ceremony in front of the town hall.  Carlito Pentecostes Jr was preparing to give a speech when the assailants, who were wearing military uniforms, opened fire on him before fleeing in a commandeered police car.  No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.

Philippines signs peace deal with Muslim rebels

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebel group has signed a landmark peace deal with the Philippine government.  President Benigno Aquino and MILF's leader, al-Haj Murad Ebrahim, confirmed the agreement at the presidential palace in the capital Manila.  "This agreement stands as a testament to how far trust and earnestness can move humanity forward. It shows how righteousness, reason and goodwill are the mightiest of instruments in ending conflict", said President Aquino.

Two killed in Mindanao violence

A police officer and a guerrilla fighter have been killed in a gun battle in the restive southern island of Mindanao.  The fighting erupted when Philippine security forces attempted to serve an arrest warrant against a suspected rebel commander from the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) in Sarangani province.

Bombing suspect killed in clash with police

A bombing suspect has been killed in a gunfight with police who were trying to arrest him in the southern Philippines.    A police spokesman said that Yusop Kusain was wanted for his alleged involvement in a 2007 bombing which killed four people in General Santos city.

Bomb blasts wound six in Mindanao

At least six people were wounded when an improvised explosive device exploded on the restive southern island of Mindanao.  Two journalists from the ABC-5 TV station were among those hurt in the blast in the town of Saudi Ampatuan, and comes after days of fighting between the Philippine army and separatist BIFF rebels in the region.

Military offensive kills 37 in Maguindanao

At least 37 suspected rebels have been killed during clashes with Philippine security forces in the southern province of Maguindanao.  Earlier this week the military launched a major offensive against insurgents from the breakaway Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), who oppose the recent peace accord between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Army launches assault of BIFF rebel group

The Philippine army has launched an operation against an Islamic splinter rebel group on the southern island of Mindanao.  Troops fired mortar rounds on guerrillas from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in the remote border of Maguindanao and North Cotabato on Monday morning, forcing hundreds of civilians to flee to safety.

Government agrees peace deal with MILF rebels

The Philippine government has agreed the final details of a peace agreement with the country's main Islamic insurgency group.  The accord will see the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), who have been fighting a separatist insurgency since 1977, decommission its 11,000-strong forces in exchange for amnesty and the creation of a larger autonomous region in the south of the country.

Southern Philippines hit by deadly flooding

The Philippines government has said that 22 people have been killed and almost 200,000 evacuated after the south of the country was hit by fresh flooding and landslides.  Days of torrential rain on the southern island of Mindanao have brought more misery to an area which is still recovering from Typhoon Bopha, which killed more than 1,900 people in December, 2012.

Grenade attack wounds 24 in Philippine school

A grenade attack has wounded at least 24 people at a school in the southern Philippines.  Emergency responders were attending to a fire at the state-run school in the town of Arakan when an unknown assailant threw a grenade.  In November police found a home-made bomb in the grounds of the school.

Mayor killed in Manilla airport shooting

Four people have been killed, including a town mayor, in a shooting at an airport in the capital Manila.  Ukol Talumpa, mayor of Labangan in Zamboanga del Sur province, was shot at close range outside the airport terminal before the gunmen fled the scene on motorbikes.

Government signs power-sharing accord with rebels

The Philippine government has announced that it has signed a landmark power-sharing accord with the country's main Muslim rebel group.  The deal was signed by negotiators from the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur, and paves the way for a final and "comprehensive peace agreement" by January, 2014.  An estimated 150,000 people have been killed in the decades-long Muslim insurgency in the southern Bangsamoro region of the country.

Death toll soars in Philippines as clean-up begins

Officials in the Philippines estimate that as many as 10,000 people have been killed in Tacloban city, capital of Leyte province, as the scale of the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan becomes apparent.  A further four million people have been affected by the storm, with rescue workers struggling to reach badly hit areas.

Typhoon Haiyan batters the eastern Philippines

Typhoon Haiyan has struck the eastern coast of the Philippines, killing at least four people and threatening as many as 12 million others across the country.  Meteorologists have said that with sustained winds of 314km/h it is the strongest typhoon of the year, and possibly the most powerful ever to make landfall.

Abu Sayyaf kidnap two workers in Sulu province

The Islamic militant group Abu Sayyaf have kidnapped two workers from the mountainous town of Patikul in Sulu province.  The victims, who were employees of a telecommunications company, were travelling on motorcycles to a transmission facility when they were ambushed by around 10 gunmen.

Philippines prepares for super Typhoon Haiyan

Officials in the Philippines have urged residents to prepare for evacuations as a powerful storm storm heads towards the country.  Typhoon Haiyan is expected to make landfall in the eastern provinces of Samar and Leyte on Friday, threatening to bring with it winds of 240km/h and up to 200mm of rainfall.

Deadly earthquake hits central Philippines

At least 85 people have been killed and more than 100 others wounded after a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the central Philippines.  The victims died when buildings and structures collapsed on the island of Bohol and in the nearby Cebu province.

Typhoon Nari hits the Philippines, leaves 13 dead

At least 13 people have been killed in severe flooding and landslides after Typhoon Nari hit the Philippines, bringing with it widespread devastation.  According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council more than 40,000 people were displaced across 11 north-eastern provinces, while thousands of homes have been left without power.

Flash flooding kills 30 in Philippines

At least 30 people have been killed after heavy rains caused flash flooding and landslides across the Philippines.  Rescuers are still searching for survivors in the heavily hit Zambales Province, about 138km south of the capital Manila.

Typhoon Usagi heads towards northern Philippines

A tropical cyclone, dubbed a "super typhoon", is forecasted to hit the northern coast of Luzon on Friday and Saturday.  Typhoon Usagi has intensified in strength in recent days, reaching speeds of up to 175km/h.  The Philippine authorities have issued storm warnings for flash flooding, landslides and storm surges for several northern provinces. 

Philippine troops close in on rebels in Zamboanga

Philippine soldiers have surrounded the remaining MNLF rebel fighters in the southern city of Zamboanga following a week of deadly clashes.  The army said that 50 rebels had been killed and a further 40 captured in the fighting, while the majority of the hostages seized by the rebels on Monday are now reported to have been freed.

MNLF rebels attack town of Lamitan as clashes continue

Fighters from the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) have attacked a second town in the southern Philippines as clashes with government troops continue across the region.  Three soldiers were wounded and five people are missing after the rebels entered the town of Lamitan in Basilan province on Thursday morning.

Philippine rebels continue to clash with troops in Zamboanga

Clashes between members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and government troops have continued in the southern port city of Zamboanga.  Thousands of people have fled the city since fighting began on Monday, while at least nine people have been killed.  The rebels are also reported to be holding dozens of civilian hostages across various locations in the city.

MNLF rebels take 200 people hostage in southern Philippines

Rebels from the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) have taken at least 200 people hostage and killed six others during a raid on Zamboanga City on the island of Mindanao.  The rebels attempted to march to the city hall to raise their flag before they were confronted by Police commandos.  Lieutenant Colonel Ramon Zagala said that the hostages were being used as a "human shield" and that clashes were still being reported across the city.

Radio journalist shot dead in Iligan City

A Filipino radio journalist has been shot dead in Iligan City in the northern Mindanao region.  Fernando Solijon, a regular critic of local politicians, was walking to his car when two unidentified gunmen on motorcycles opened fire on him.  He is the fourth journalist to be murdered in the country over the past month.

Bomb kills eight in southern Philippines

At least eight people have been killed after a large bomb exploded in the southern city of Cotabato on Mindanao Island.  A further 30 people were wounded in the blast, which appeared to have been targeting the city's administrator, Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi.

IED kills six in Cagayan de Oro

At least six people have been killed by an improvised explosive device (IED) in the southern city of Cagayan de Oro.  A further 48 people were wounded in the blast, which occurred outside a row of expensive bars and restaurants in the city.

New People's Army rebels kill seven marines in ambush

Seven Filipino marines have been killed in an ambush by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels in the northern town of Allacapan in Cagayan province.  According to a local police spokesman the troop's vehicle hit a roadside bomb before a group of 30 rebels opened fire.

New People's Army rebels kidnap six civilians

A group of suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels have kidnapped six civilians in Tagum City, Davao Oriental province.  Around 30 rebels, who were dressed as police officers and members of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), used the victim's cars to carry out a raid on a security agency in the city.

Taiwan carries out military drills amid Philippine row

Taiwan's military has carried out a series out a naval drills in the Bashi channel, close to where a Philippine coast guard shot dead a Taiwanese fisherman last week.  The issues has caused a serious diplomatic row between the two countries, with Taiwan rejecting an apology by the Philippine president yesterday, calling it "unacceptable".

Philippine mayor wounded in deadly ambush

Gunmen have killed at least 10 people in a deadly ambush on a mayor in the southern Philippines.  Abdulmalik Manamparan, mayor of Nunungan town, survived the attack although a number of his close relatives were reportedly killed.

Dozens killed in casino attack attempt, Manila

Dozens killed in casino attack attempt, Manila

Philippines Data Sheet

Population:
97.7 million
Major Religion/s:
Christianity (80% Roman Catholic), Islam
International dialing code:
+63
International dialing prefix:
00
Emergency services:
117
Drives:
Right
Voltage:
220V
Climate:
Tropical
Ohter Major Cities:
Quezon City, Caloocan, Davao City
Borders: