Although the threats from AlQaeda have decreased somewhat in the last year, the military and the NPA (communists) still shoot each other or perform “extrajudicial killings” of various sorts. These various sorts include killing opponents, arresting prominent opposition senators for twenty year old murders, and of course blowing up electric and telephone towers when those businesses refuse to pay protection money.

Right now, the warning is about the NPA celebrating their 38th anniversary, just to remind people that they are still around.
So when the headlines announced that two gunmen took hostage 37 children and two teachers hostage in a bus during a field trip in Manila the alarm went out.

However, the latest update on ABS-CBN says the hostage taker was the owner of the daycare  center that the children attended. And the “demands” were actually the owner seeking publicity to pressure politicians to give the children a full education.

(It should be noted that we are at the end of the school year, and there are many field trips during this time).

The final story will probably change again as the day goes on, but right now it seems a false alarm, thank the Lord.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her webpage is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket

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