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Zambo police on high alert after Basilan, Sibugay violence
The online news portal of TV5

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines – The Zamboanga City Police Office (ZCPO) has placed its forces on high alert status following the violence in Basilan and Zamboanga Sibugay provinces the past week.

A total of 27 government forces were killed while 22 others were wounded in a clash and ambush by rebels in the provinces of Basilan and Zamboanga Sibugay.

Two explosions rocked the province of Zamboanga Sibugay Thursday night while a dynamite was lobbed Friday night at a public school in Zamboanga del Sur.  

ZCPO director Senior Supt. Edwin de Ocampo has ordered his men to conduct "surprise inspections" and put up checkpoints in all of the city's points of entry.

De Ocampo also ordered to intensify intelligence operations and to be on the lookout for lawless elements, particularly Abu Sayyaf bandits who might slip into the city to carry out atrocities.

On Friday, people and shoppers ran for safety after an abandoned cardboard box suspected to be containing improvised bomb was found in front of a shopping mall along Gov. Lim Avenue in downtown Zamboanga.

The content of the box turned out to be sand and an old mobile phone; the cardboard box was found by the mall's security personnel.

De Ocampo said they have tapped the assistance of the city's 98 barangay chairmen as well as the military's Task Force Zamboanga (TFZ) to help guard the city from possible attacks.