FDA chief's police escorts killed, hurt in ambush try

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 18) — Three of the police escorts of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Director General Nela Charade Puno were killed in an ambush attempt on Thursday morning. Three other police personnel were hurt.

According to an initial police report, Puno and her police escorts were on a convoy along the national highway of Lupi, Camarines Sur when unidentified armed men shot at the vehicle. They were on their way to Daet, Camarines Norte after the provincial capital passed an ordinance requiring establishments to secure FDA clearance prior to acquiring a business license.

The three wounded personnel were brought to the nearest hospital.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque said Puno and her FDA team were unharmed and brought to a safe location.

"The safety of DG Puno and FDA employees is our top priority at the moment. They have the full backing of the Department," he said in a statement.

The police and the health department are conducting investigations.