'Islamist' Bomb Kills 5 at Philippines Cathedral

45 injured in blast blamed on Islamic separatists
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jul 5, 2009 8:13 AM CDT
Filipinos stand beside debris caused by a bomb explosion just outside a Catholic church in Cotabato city, southern Philippines on Sunday, July 5, 2009.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – A bombing outside a church in the southern Philippines this morning killed five and injured 45, Reuters reports. The military blamed the attack on the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, a militant separatist group, the BBC notes. “The rebels are getting desperate and they are no longer choosing their targets," an official said. "They are now attacking even places of worship.” A leader of the group denied the charge.

“Who needs a Christian-Muslim conflict?" he told Reuters via text message. "There's no religious conflict in the south. We're fighting for our right of self-determination. We're only defending our people and our communities.”