Thursday, February 14, 2008


Arroyo target of plot
By OLIVER TEVES, Associated Press Writer

MANILA, Philippines - Authorities have uncovered alleged plots by al-Qaida-linked militants to assassinate the Philippine president and bomb foreign embassies, officials said Thursday.

Military chief of staff Gen. Hermogenes Esperon said the assassination plot allegedly was hatched by the extremist Abu Sayyaf group and its Indonesia-based ally, Jemaah Islamiyah.

Brig. Gen. Romeo Prestoza, head of the Presidential Security Group, said police uncovered the plot last week. "It's not only the president who is the target, but also other people ... and embassies," he said without offering specifics.

The alleged plot was also to involve a sniper shooting the president, Esperon said.

A U.S. Embassy spokeswoman said officials there were aware of media reports that foreign embassies had been targeted but would not comment further. She spoke on condition of anonymity in line with policy.

The officials did not specify when the attacks were expected to occur. But Prestoza said President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's attendance at an alumni homecoming of the Philippine Military Academy on Saturday in northern Baguio city has been canceled and the rest of her schedule was "under assessment."


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Arroyo target of plot

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