MANILA (3rd UPDATE) – An explosion hit a restaurant in Isulan town, Sultan Kudarat past 3 p.m. Wednesday, police said.
Police said a "loud explosion" rang out inside a chicken restaurant on the national highway in Barangay Kalawag 2, leaving several hurt.
At least 18 people were wounded, including 6 minors and a pregnant woman, data from the local disaster office showed.
No fatalities were reported while 2 victims are undergoing surgery.
Isulan Mayor Maritess Pallasigue said her office did not receive any threat prior to the blast, which was caused by an improvised explosive device.
"No, wala. Kahit ano wala. Walang threat, walang report. Kahit text messages wala sa amin," she told ANC.
(No, nothing. We received nothing, no threat, no report. Not even text messages to us.)
"Generally our place is peaceful. I don't know what happened, why this is happening in our place."
Pallasigue said she has ordered tighter security measures to be enforced in the area.
Police Lt. Col. Aldrin Gonzales, spokesperson of PNP-Soccsksargen, said they are looking into extortion as the motive behind the blast.
–With a report from Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News