The Abu Sayyaf (ASG) is constantly moving their latest kidnap victims between islands of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi in an apparent bid to confuse pursuing government troops, a police intelligence officer disclosed on Monday.
A Manila based intelligence officer who asked the Times not to be named said that they received information that two kidnap victims–a Chinese tourist and a Filipina resort worker–are being moved frequently between the islands through a speedboat.
“They’re doing this to confuse troops that are in pursuit of them and doing this while negoations are ongoing,” the intelligence officer said.
The two women were snatched by seven heavily armed men in a resort on Semporna, Sabah last week and escaped by boat towards tha direction of Sulu province.
The police source said that the kidnappers could be part of the Sawajaan subgroup of Abu Sayyaf based in Patikul town, Sulu. He added that the victims may have been moved by their captors nearer to a Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) camp in Sulu as added security.
The ASG is the smallest, but the most vicious of all threat groups operating in southern Philippines and been blamed for bombings and kidnappings in the past. (ANTHONY VARGAS)