Australia offers to help RP in Davao bombing inquiry
Sydney -- Australia's police have offered to help with the investigation of a deadly bombing last week in the southern Philippines as part of increased regional counter-terrorism efforts, officials said Monday.
The bomb attack at the airport in Davao city killed 21 people and injured more than 150 others.
The commissioner of Australia's federal police, Mick Keelty, said he had offered help in the investigation in a series of conversations with his Philippines counterpart, Hermogenes Ebdane.
"I have been in constant communication, if you like, with General Ebdane," Keelty said on public radio. "And they'll probably be calling me again today."
Australia signed a bilateral agreement on counter-terrorism cooperation with the Philippines last week and current discussions focus on the troubled southern Philippines where Muslim separatists are active, the commissioner said.
Keelty said he was also in frequent contact with Indonesian police chief General Da'i Bachtiar in what he described as a three-way approach to terrorism in the area.
"Between the three of us we discussed at the higher level in terms of operations what connections might exist between what's going on between Indonesia and also the Philippines," Keelty said. -- AFP