Duterte wants Misuari to help secure release of Abu Sayyaf captives
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday said he will ask Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chairman Nur Misuari to help secure the release of the three foreign hostages of the terrorist Abu Sayyaf group.
“Well, that’s part of the mission… then I would appeal to Nur Misuari to stop it,” Duterte said in an interview with reporters in Malacañang.
“And tell the Abu Sayyaf that, ‘Look we’re talking. Don’t make it hard for us to seek peace in our land,’” he added.
The group earlier threatened to execute a Malaysian and two Indonesian hostages held captive in Mindanao if they do not receive the ransom for their release.
Malacañang, however, stands firm on its “no ransom policy” in dealing with lawless groups.
“To give in to the demands of terrorists and other lawless groups would embolden them to engage in more abductions that would allow them to conduct extremist and other criminal activities as they could buy more arms and weapons,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.
Misuari played a vital role in the release of four Abu Sayyaf kidnap victims in 2016 — a Norwegian and three Indonesian fishermen. /ee
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