Military tiptoes on Samal island kidnapping of foreigners, Pinay
The Armed Forces have become extra careful in handling the kidnapping of three foreigners and a Filipina from the Island Garden of Samal amid conflicting reports of the victims’ whereabouts.
“Maraming pumasok na impormasyon na nandun na sa isla ng Jolo at ASG (Abu Sayyaf Group) ang nagsagawa pero dahil hindi pa ito naba-validate nang husto, hindi pa kami makakapagbigay ng final na balita tungkol dito,” said Colonel Restituto Padilla, spokesperson of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
Earlier reports said kidnap victims Canadians John Ridsdel and Robert Hall, Hall’s Filipino girlfriend Marites Flor, and Norwegian marina manager Kjartan Sekkingstad, had been taken to the mountains of Davao Oriental.
BACKSTORY: 4 Samal hostages taken to Davao mountains
The foreigners and Filipina were taken from the Holiday Oceanview Marina before midnight on September 21, 2015, by gunmen who left a message claiming that they were members of the New People’s Army (NPA).
BACKSTORY: Filipina, 3 foreigners abducted on Samal Island
But Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte expressed doubt over the NPA claim saying communist rebels were ideologues who would not abduct for money.
Duterte speculated that it could have been done by the Abu Sayyaf.
BACKSTORY: Duterte: NPA not behind kidnapping of foreigners on Samal
The AFP spokesperson said there was still no confirmation to the report of the victims already in Jolo.
“Patuloy pang binibirepika ng mga pulis at mga tropa sa isla ng Jolo (ang impormasyon),” Padilla added talking to Noli de Castro on radio dzMM’s Kabayan program.
“Mismong ang mga impormante natin ay hindi pa rin nakikita ang presensiya ng mga kidnap victims kaya kailangang maging maingat ang armed forces at pulis sa pagbibigay ng balita at pahayag tungkol dito hangga’t hindi tayo nakakasigurado,” the spokesperson added.
Padilla appealed to Duterte to pursue cooperation with the military.
“Ang pakiusap namin over the weekend (kay Mayor Duterte) sana kung mayroon siyang impormasyon ay makipag-ugnayan siya sa mga kasama natin upang ma-validate ang kanyang source at mapabilis ang proseso,” Padilla said. CB
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