File photo: African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Manila - At least one person was killed and 36 injured on Tuesday in a bomb explosion during a town festival in the southern Philippines, the military and police said.

The explosion occurred near the municipal hall of Isulan town in Sultan Kudarat province, 969 kilometres south of Manila, where people were gathered for a celebration, said Brigadier General Cirilito Sobejana, an army division commander.

Sobejana said civilians alerted soldiers to a man who allegedly left a bag containing a home-made bomb near a motorcycle, and troops were chasing after the suspect when the bomb went off.

"Despite our intensified checkpoint operations, there are many entry points, thus the bomb courier was able to reach the area," he said.

At least one person was confirmed killed in the blast, while 36 were rushed to hospital, said Senior Superintendent Noel Kinazo, the provincial police chief.

Authorities have yet to identify a suspect in the bombing, but militants allied with the Islamic State terrorist network have been blamed for past bombings in the area.

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