Sat May 6, 2017 1:13PM
Police officers investigate on the blast site in Quiapo, Manila, the Philippines, April 28, 2017, after a homemade pipe bomb exploded. (AFP photo)
Police officers investigate on the blast site in Quiapo, Manila, the Philippines, April 28, 2017, after a homemade pipe bomb exploded. (AFP photo)

Two people have been killed and four others injured in an explosion in the Philippine capital, Manila.

Police said on Saturday that the blast took place at about 5:30 p.m. local time in Quiapo, one of the older parts of Manila where there are big slums.

Manila's police chief, Oscar Albayalde, would not elaborate on other details about the explosion, which targeted the Islamic Center in the area. Local media said police swiftly secured the religious compound after receiving reports of the blast while ambulances were rushed to the scene to attend to those injured.

Quiapo was the scene of another blast on April 29, when the leaders of South Asian countries were meeting in Manila for a regional summit. Police said at the time that the explosion, which left 14 people injured, had nothing to do with the meeting and that terrorism was not an issue. The incident could have come as part of a gang war in Manila, police added. Reports said the bombing had targeted a Christian place of gathering.

The government in the Philippines is in the middle of a fierce crackdown on drug addicts and dealers. The crackdown, which has left thousands of people killed, most of them in extrajudicial circumstances, has sparked huge criticism inside and outside the Philippines.

Many fear the crackdown, initiated by President Rodrigo Duterte since he came to power last year, could trigger social unrest in a country already gripped by terrorist attacks in the south.