ZAMBOANGA CITY: Five gunmen snatched a nine-year old daughter of a restaurant owner in downtown Olutanga in Zamboanga Sibugay province in the southern Philippines, security officials said on Saturday.
Officials said the gunmen barged into the restaurant late Friday afternoon and abducted the girl and fled towards the coastal area where a motorized boat was waiting for them.
Witnesses told soldiers and policemen who responded to the abduction that two of the abductors were brandishing M16 automatic rifles while the others carried handguns, according to Capt. Franco Suelto, a spokesman for the 1st Infantry Division.
He said they deployed soldiers from the 44th Infantry Battalion to help the local police force track down the abductors.
“Troops were sent to pursue the abductors and we are working closely with the local police to determine who were behind this abduction. We also alerted army detachments in the town about this incident,” he said.
No individual or group claimed responsibility for the abduction.