From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 1, 2019): ASG hand strongly eyed in Jolo blasts: Lorenzana
The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) is being eyed as the main perpetrators of the bloody twin bomb blasts in Jolo, Sulu that claimed the lives of 22 persons and wounded at least 97 others last January 27.
"Yes! Our source(s) (are) local and outside (intelligence), including the so-called East-Asia ISIS (Islamic State) website. Besides, only the ASG (the Sawadjaan faction) has (a) tie-up with the ISIS," Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said in a message to the Philippine News Agency late Thursday when asked if they are looking into the possible involvement of the terror group in the incident.
Lorenzana was referring to Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, a sub-leader of the ASG.
The defense chief earlier said the intelligence community is monitoring the presence of 40 foreign terrorists scattered in Central Mindanao, Basilan, and even in Jolo, Sulu.
"Whether there are foreign terrorists, either Indonesians or Malaysians, you cannot easily identify them because they look like us, unless they speak," he added.
When asked on what the government is doing in the wake of the Jolo, Sulu bomb blasts, Lorenzana said the entire area had been locked down.
"When the blast occurred in Sulu, we locked down the whole town. It means everybody coming in will be inspected and those going out are also inspected. We are also monitoring the movement of the people there. They have curfew there. I think 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. (and) it was being imposed by the military even before the blasts occurred," he added.