Four killed, nine wounded in suspected revenge attack over clan feud in the Philippines

ILIGAN, Philippines (AFP) - Four people, including a child, were killed and nine wounded in a suspected revenge attack in the southern Philippines, the police said on Sunday.

A group of men opened fire on homes of the Maranaw ethnic group in the town of Wao on Mindanao island on Saturday, said the town's senior police officer Avelino Vidal.

Mr Vidal said the motive may have been revenge after certain individuals blamed members of the Maranaw community for a recent rape. Residents of the village are now fleeing in fear of further retaliatory attacks.

The police and troops have been deployed to prevent further violence, the authorities said.

Violence between clans in the southern Philippines, locally known as "rido", has often spiralled out of control, claiming numerous lives before peace is restored.

Such feuds have been sparked by personal grudges, property disputes and political rivalries. They can quickly escalate if armed groups like rebels or criminal gangs get involved.