Gov’t mechanic seized, pal killed by Sulu Abus PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 19 August 2014 11:46

Security forces on Monday continued tracking down some 30 suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen who seized late Saturday night two government employed mechanics in the town of Patikul, Sulu.

Police said one of the mechanics was later found dead not very far from where they were abducted.
Senior Supt. Abraham Orbita, Sulu police chief, said an estimated 30 armed men stormed the Sulu provincial government's motorpool in Patikul around 10:30 p.m.and abducted chief mechanic Ronald Pelegrin, 39, and his assistant, Dante Avila, 29.
In his report to ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman, Orbita said police and marines were dispatched Sunday to hunt the abductors, believed to have fled to the jungles of Patikul's neighboring towns.
Orbita said Avila's body was found dead Sunday. He was shot by the suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen.
Saturday night's abduction came a month after four government social workers were seized by Abu Sayyaf militants in Talipao town on July 18.
The four social workers were on their way to validate family-beneficiaries to be included in the Department of Social Welfare and Developmen's cash assistance program for poor families and to monitor a Pamana project meant for families of former Muslim rebels  when they were abducted in the village of Upper Sinumaan.
The four workers were later released separately through negotiations carried out provincial officials.
The Abu Sayyaf, armed with mostly improvised explosive devices, mortars and automatic rifles, has carried out bombings, kidnappings, assassinations and extortions in a self-determined fight for an independent Islamic state in Southern Philippines.
Last week, Abu Sayyaf, together with the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), another militant Muslim group, have thrown support to the Islamic State (IS), a group of jihadist in Syria and Iraq.
But the military claimed this reported support is "unverified."
Domingo Tutaan, spokesman of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, had asked Philippine journalists to be "circumspect in reporting the alleged linkages", saying this may cause undue alarm to the people.
Clips have been posted on the video sharing site YouTube, showing members of the Abu Sayyaf and BIFF pledging support to the IS, formerly known as ISIS.
A wire report quoted BIFF spokesman Abu Misry Mama as confirming that the BIFF indeed has alliance with the IS. The BIFF is composed of former leaders and members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Also last week, Sulu police have confirmed that German nationals doctor Stefan Victor Okonek and Henrite Dielen are being held captive by the Abu Sayyaf in Indanan town.
Orbita has confirmed the abduction after a photo of the Germans in the company of Filipino gunmen surfaced on Facebook.
“Yes, it’s confirmed that they are being held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf group and all we can do now is to locate and monitor their movements,” Orbita said on Wednesday.
He said the group holding Okonek, 74, and Dielen, 42, was headed by a certain Alhabshi Misaya who operates in Indanan.