2 pairs of severed feet in bombed Jolo church didn't match fatalities - source

Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 19 2019 07:45 AM | Updated as of Feb 19 2019 07:56 AM

2 pairs of severed feet in bombed Jolo church didn't match fatalities - source 1
Members of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) comb through Mount Carmel Cathedral, the site of a deadly blast, in Jolo, Sulu. January 31, 2019. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Two pairs of severed feet recovered from a church in Jolo, Sulu that was struck by twin explosions last month do not belong to any of the 23 fatalities, a source said Tuesday, reviving the possibility that suicide bombers carried out the attack. 

None of the 23 fatalities lost their feet in the January 21 bombing claimed by the Islamic State, the source said. 

The 4 mutilated feet belong to a man and woman, the police source told ABS-CBN News, citing the results of an initial DNA match analysis conducted in Manila. 

Authorities were coordinating with the Interpol to determine whether the severed body parts belonged to Filipinos or foreign nationals, the source added. 

The mutilated feet were already in an advanced state of composition. Bone specimen were taken from the body parts and subjected to analysis, said the ABS-CBN source. 

DNA samples from all 23 fatalities, meanwhile, matched specimen from their relatives, the source said. 

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President Rodrigo Duterte earlier said that suicide bombers were responsible for the Jolo bombing. The perpetrators were a couple but reports on their nationality are conflicting, he said.

The military said it was not discounting the possibility, but added that the Abu Sayyaf subgroup Ajang-Ajang was a suspect. 

The Sulu provincial prosecutor has found probable cause to file charges against an alleged Ajang-Ajang leader known as alias Kammah and 4 others.