Outside the cathedral (Source: internet)

Hanoi (VNA)
– Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong sent his condolences on January 28 to Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte over the twin terror bomb attack at a cathedral in Jolo Island, Sulu province that occurred the previous day.

The same day, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh also expressed his sympathy to Philippine Foreign Minister Teodoro Lopez Locsin.

The twin explosions happened after mass at 8am (local time), leaving as many as 20 dead and dozens injured. The victims were mostly government troops and civilians.

The bombings took place days after the ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), a new law that paves the way for the creation of a wider autonomous region for Muslim Filipinos in Mindanao.

Although Muslims overwhelmingly approved the law, Sulu province, where Jolo is located, voted against the autonomous government.

The Philippine Commission on Elections had previously announced that the law was ratified following the approval of more than 1.5 million votes. –VNA