Nine Philippine troops including president’s guards hit by blast

Nine members of the military were wounded, including seven from the country’s elite Presidential Security Group (PSG), in a roadside explosion in southern Philippines on Tuesday.

Military spokesman Restituto Padilla said the attack occurred in Marawi City in Lanao del Sur province.

He said that the troops were part of an advance party ahead of the visit of President Rodrigo Duterte to the area, which might not go ahead now for security reasons.

“They (troops) were heading towards the military headquarters when they were hit by a roadside explosion caused by an improvised explosive,’’ Padilla said, adding that one PSG member and another soldier were seriously injured.

Padilla said a presidential chopper airlifted five soldiers to a hospital in the nearby city of Cagayan de Oro.

The military said the attack might be related to the ongoing conflict between troops and the Maute terrorist group who have occupied the centre of the nearby town of Butig since Thursday.

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