Police of the Philippines. (Photo: Xinhua/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Philippine authorities said on April 6 that they foiled a terror plot after arresting two people suspected of membership of the self-styled Islamic State (IS).

Police detained Husayn Al-Dhafiri and Rahaf Zina in the capital city of Manila on March 25 after receiving information from Kuwaiti authorities. The arrests were kept secret while authorities continued the investigation.

Al-Dhafiri and Zina have lived in Manila since last January. The pair also travelled to Davao in the south and Cebu in the central Philippines. It is unclear if the two suspects have links with local extremists.

Speaking with reporters, Justice Secretary of the Philippines Vitaliano Aguirre said that the suspects entered the country repeatedly in recent months to plan a bomb attack either in the Philippines or Kuwait.

According to Aguirre, Al-Dhafiri is an active member of IS in the Middle East and US authorities believe he could threaten the national security of the Philippines. He is allegedly involved in making explosives and plotting against Kuwait. Zina’s ex-husband was a high-ranking leader of IS who was killed in Syria.

Al-Dhafiri could be deported to Kuwait, while Zina could be sent back to Qatar from where she entered the Philippines.

Earlier, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte warned that IS members could enter the Southeast Asian nation by mixing with Muslim communities in the southern Philippines. The country has been battling extremist Islamic groups in the south for years, including some that have pledged allegiance to IS.-VNA