GOV’T FIRM NOT GIVING IN TO ASG’S RANSOM DEMAND AMID FOREIGNERS IN CAPTIVE
Abu Sayyaf Islamic militants have taken captive more than a dozen Malaysian and Indonesian PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
MANILA – Malacañang is firm on its policy not to give in to any compromise of the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), particularly if the latter demands ransom money to free its hostages.
"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 explained their distant policy against ASG.
Panelo said that the government is doing its best to secure the release of the two Indonesian and one Malaysian hostages. The palace spokesperson proudly assured the government’s mandate against the terrorist group.
“The ASG continues to be on the run as a result of the order of the President to the military to crush them. Our security forces are hunting them in the wild forests of Mindanao to unleash their might and blow them to kingdom come," he said.
Recently, the Abu Sayyaf threatened to execute the hostages, currently held captive in Mindanao, if ransoms are not met to be given. Being guarded by gunmen, the Indonesian hostages believed to be Heri Ardiansyah, 19; and Hariadin, 45, were shown in the video in a forest posted by ASG.
The Malaysian hostage, Jari Abdulla, 24, was not with the two in the video. The hostages were kidnapped at sea off Sandakan in Sabah on Dec. 5, 2018.
Known for their relentless kidnapping and extreme acts of crime, ASG had been linked several times with the most infamous Islamic State in Iraq and Syria-Al Qaeda terrorist pact.
One of the most violent terrorist groups in the Philippines ASG has grown dramatically within the past few years, likely due to its funds acquired through kidnapping, and it remains. Its notorious ransom and beheading videos most often feature their foreign national victims, in which demand ransom from their victims respective governments
Structured like an Octopod, ASG tentacles extending into the various provinces, but seemingly acting independent of each other.