philippines all souls day graveside
Thousands are expected to spend All Souls' Day holiday celebrating by the graves of loved-onesReuters

Security has been boosted all over the Philippines over fear of terrorist and criminal activity during the All Soul's Day celebrations. In the largely Catholic Philippines, All Souls' Day is seen as an important holiday where families come together and spend nights at the graves of their loved-ones. In Western Christianity, All Souls' Day lands on 2 November each year and is spent remembering those who have passed on.

Six hundred soldiers are to be deployed around the capital, Manilla, while an extra 4,000 will be on standby to help police, 2,000 of whom will be around Manilla's cemeteries and suburbs to keep the peace.

"We cannot lower our guard, especially on occasions when the public is vulnerable," Brigadier General Carlito Galvez, deputy chief of staff for operations of the Philippine Armed Forces, said to the Catholic news site UCANews.com.

The military are reportedly on high alert in case militant groups try to take advantage of the holiday. A number of militant Islamic groups are active in the country and have been known to carry out bomb and gun attacks and the Communist New People's Army has been at war with the Philippines' government since 1969.

In the city of Cebu, Chief Inspector David Señor told The Freeman that the police are on heightened alert. All leave and days-off have been cancelled and 477 officers will be patrolling the city's cemeteries.

In San Fernando, Pampanga, police released a set of guidelines to people travelling to visit family and celebrating All Souls' Day. Advice includes locking all doors and leaving a radio on if leaving homes unattended. Those travelling are told not to wear jewellery or carry large amounts of cash.