Grenade thrown at Philippine columnist’s home

A grenade was hurled at columnist Steve Barriero’s garage while he was parking his car in the driveway at around 11 p.m. on July 31, 2009, in village 23 in the northern province of Ilocos Norte in the Philippines, according to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines and the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Barriero, who writes a weekly political column for the Ilocos Times newspaper, was walking into his house when the grenade exploded in a water-filled earthen jar that reduced its destructive impact, according to the reports. The blast injured Barriero’s domestic employee and damaged the car, although the columnist was unhurt, news reports said.

Barriero believes that attack may have had something to do with recent columns he has been writing about a politician, according to a statement released by the union.

 “The blast was meant for me and this has something to do with my work,” Barriero told the Inquirer. He hired security guards last month after a local official told him he was a target, the newspaper reported. “I have an [idea] as to who might want to get me but I am declining to name names until further investigation,” Barriero told the newspaper.