Palace condoles with family of boat captain killed by Abu Sayyaf
Malacañang on Monday expressed sympathies to the family of a fishing boat captain beheaded by the bandit group Abu Sayyaf.
“We express our sincerest condolences to the bereaved family of FB Ramon 2 captain, Noel Besconde, who met untimely death in the hands of the kidnap-for-ransom group Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG),” Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said in a statement.
“We strongly condemn this senseless and coldblooded murder committed during the Holy Week,” he said.
The Palace official assured the family that local authorities and security forces are “exhausting all means to locate the captain’s remains” as the military continues to go after the terrorist group, which recently attacked Bohol.
Abella called on Filipinos “to remain vigilant, alert and watchful, and to cooperate with our security forces.”
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) confirmed on Sunday that Besconde was killed by the group.
Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, who heads Joint Task Force Sulu, said they monitored what happened and confirmed it after the release of the video showing the beheading.
Besconde was the captain of FB Ramona 2, which was found empty on the morning of December 19 in the Celebes Sea, near the boundary of the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia. His three companions, also Filipinos, were also missing.
Sobejana said Besconde was probably beheaded because he was reportedly sick.
Besconde’s family was contacted by the Abu Sayyaf but could not raise the ransom money of P3 million.
“But the reason for the beheading was that he was delaying their movement. Based on the video, the beheading was done hastily. There was no ritual unlike (in previous beheadings),” Sobejana was quoted saying./rga
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