An explosion at a Catholic Mass in the southern Philippines has killed at least four people and wounded dozens of others on Sunday. AP

Bomb blast kills at least 4 worshippers during Catholic Mass in Philippines

By Associated Press

The morning Mass was underway in a gymnasium at the state-run Mindanao State University in Marawi City when the explosion happened, causing panic among dozens of students and teachers and leaving the victims bloodied and sprawled on the ground, said Taha Mandangan, the security chief of the state-run campus.

At least two of the wounded were fighting for their lives, Mandangan said.

“This is clearly an act of terrorism. It’s not a simple feud between two people. A bomb will kill everybody around,” Mandangan told The Associated Press by telephone.

Regional military commander Maj. Gen. Gabriel Viray III said at least four people were killed by the explosion, including three women, and 50 others were brought to two hospitals for treatment of mostly minor injuries.

Only two of those killed had been identified, officials said.

Army troops and police immediately cordoned off the area and were conducting an initial investigation and checking security cameras for any indication of who may have been responsible for the attack. Security checkpoints were set up around the city.

The deadly blast set off a security alarm beyond Marawi city as the Christmas season ushered in a period of travel, shopping sprees and traffic jams across the country.

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