In this photo provided by the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Western Mindanao Command chief Maj. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana; Filipino suicide bomber Norman Lasuca sits with his mother Vilman. On Wednesday, July 10, 2019. Military and police officials say a DNA test has confirmed the identity of the first known Filipino suicide bomber named as Norman Lasuca. Two attackers carrying explosives killed three soldiers, two villagers and themselves and wounded 22 others in a June 28 attack on an army camp in southern Sulu province. The second attacker remains unidentified. (Armed Forces of the Philippines Via AP)
Philippine National Police (PNP) reported that the country’s first suicide bomber had a rough past, driving him to join a terrorist faction and ended up exploding himself.
The country’s first suicide bomber was a battered son who even ran away from home in 2014, five years before he and another extremist blew themselves up outside a military camp in Jolo, Sulu which resulted to seven people dead.
“We can now confirm… the incidence of the first suicide bombing in the Philippines, perpetrated by a Filipino in the person of Norman Lasuca,” military spokesman Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo said in a news conference.
The DNA samples of Norman, 23, and his mother Vilman Alam Lasuca matched.
In a joint statement, the AFP and PNP said investigators from the Regional Crime Laboratory Office of the Police Regional Office 11 in Davao City found a “99.99% match” between a DNA sample from the remains of the attacker, and samples from his mother and his brother, Alhussin Alam Lasuca.
Last week, Vilman claimed the remains of Norman.
Authorities said there was no doubt that Norman and another bomber were behind the twin blasts at the headquarters of the 1st Brigade Combat Team in Indanan, Sulu that also injured 22 people.
Meanwhile, the PNP and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) are still in the process of confirming the identity of the second bomber, who was earlier identified by Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of the military’s Western Mindanao Command.
According to the reports of Manila Times, AFP spokesman Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo said that Norman was physically abused by his father.
“This man was a battered son. He was a victim of physical abuse of his father who was a laborer back then,” Arevalo cited.
Norman’s father was a mechanic. The abuse traumatized Norman, and made him leave his family in 2014. As early as 17 years old,, he joined the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG)
“We really need to watch our family and relatives to ensure that they won’t engage in these kind of acts,” Arevalo advised.
Organized by Abu Sayyaf
The authorities said that the suicide attack was organized by the ASG.
Moreover, the international terror group Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack, according to the SITE Intelligence Group that monitors jihadist activities worldwide.
The recent suicide bombing recently has been the third case in the country, according to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
The first strike was in Lamitan City, Basilan, where a Moroccan was the suspect. The second was in Jolo,
Sulu, where members of the ASG, under the faction of terrorist leader and Islamic State (IS) emir Hajan Sawadjaan, were the suspects.
Security officials warned that IS militants were on hunt for other local prospects for more attacks in the future.
Based on the defense official’s monitoring, the IS militant are training more people.
“The probability is high,” Sobejana said when asked about the future suicide attacks by local militants.
He said suicide bomber recruits were training in the south of the country, where IS-linked outfits operate.
Arevalo said the Sulu attack prompted the police and the military to make stricter adjustments to their policies.
“The security environment in our country has changed,” Arevalo said, requiring military and police “adjustments in techniques, tactics and procedures.”
“Before, we only heard of IED (improvised explosive device) attacks, remote-controlled attacks, but this time an individual blew himself up as a full-fledged suicide bomber.”
But the military waned the fears of the public, saying that the Jolo suicide bombing was an “isolated case.”