MANILA -- (2ND UPDATE) Police closed off a section of Roxas Boulevard in downtown Manila on Monday after a suspected bomb was found inside a trash can near the US Embassy, authorities said.
Two explosions were heard from the area at 8 a.m. as the Manila Police District Explosives and Ordnance Division (MPD-EOD) isolated the "bomb."
An office of the US Embassy was evacuated while the road closure affected the stretch of Roxas Boulevard from Kalaw to Quirino Avenues.
The trash can where the bomb was found belongs to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), according to street sweeper Ely Garcia. Garcia said the bomb was connected to a cellphone.
MPD chief Senior Superintendent Joel Coronel declared the bomb threat negative at 9 a.m.
"Upon inspection, it appears there's only some cellphone or some gadgets inside [the trash can]... As of now, it's safe, wala nang danger," he said.
The National Capital Region Police Office said (NCRPO), however, later confirmed that a bomb was found in the area and that it resembled the improvised explosive device (IED) that left 14 people dead at a night market in Davao City in September.
NCRPO chief Director Oscar Albayalde said the bombs could be triggered with a cellphone and were both fashioned out of a 81-mm mortar, blasting caps and 9-volt batteries.
The NCRPO and Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa are scheduled to give a press briefing on the matter. -- With reports from Dennis Datu, DZMM; Bianca Dava, ABS-CBN News