Sulu teacher freed PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 20 August 2016 11:54

The military on Friday confirmed that a school teacher seized by the Abu Sayyaf was released after  three days of  captivity in the troubled Sulu province.

Western Mindanao military command spokesman Maj. Filemon Tan said in a statement that 30-year-old Adrina Bongil, a teacher of the Tuup Elementary School was immediately brought to the house of Patikul town Mayor Kabir Elias Hayudini and  was subsequently turned over to her relatives in Jolo town.

There were no details on  how Bongil was released, but Tan said no ransom was paid for her freedom.

The teacher was seized in Patikul town by men armed with assault rifles and pistols on Tuesday.  Two of them were later identified as Kulot and Walton, who are followers of Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Morasil Mujahirin, according to the military spokesman.

The Army’s 32nd and 10th Infantry Battalions have earlier  been mobilized to conduct search and rescue operations for Bongil

He said they are still checking if the militant group was behind the kidnapping of a government employee, his wife and their seven-year-old son in Payao town, Zamboanga Sibugay province earlier this month.

Earlier two Indonesian hostages kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf in mid-June escaped separately this week.

The duo are two of seven men kidnapped in late June when the Abu Sayyaf ambushed a tugboat — the TB Charles — carrying 13 Indonesians in the Sulu Sea. While six of the crew were released, seven others were taken, their abductors then demanding a ransom.

The men — kidnapped mid June — were due to be executed by the Abu Sayyaf Aug. 15 after the deadline for $5.4 million passed.

The captain of the Indonesian tugboat named Ismail was found walking along a road Wednesday in Sulu in the Muslim south. The other Indonesian sailor Safyan was earlier found stuck on fishnet along mangroves after he escaped and swam to freedom

The Abu Sayyaf is still holding a Norwegian, a Dutchman, three Malaysians, and seven Filipinos.

On Wednesday, the group released a video threatening to behead a Filipino hostage unless a ransom demand is paid by Aug. 24.

However, the kidnapping of the man in the video — named as Patrick James Almodovar — had not been reported.

The Abu Sayyaf is among two militant groups in the south who have pledged allegiance to Daesh, prompting fears during the stalling of a peace process between the government and the country’s biggest Moro group that it could make inroads in a region torn by decades of armed conflict.