ZAMBOANGA CITY: Security forces raided an island off Zamboanga City and arrested an Abu Sayyaf militant implicated in several kidnappings here as the operations to track down other members of the group continued on Saturday.
Officials said Wahid Pingli was traced on Friday by soldiers and policemen to a hideout in Sacol Island. An automatic rifle was also recovered from him, said Marine Captain Maria Rowena Muyuela, a spokeswoman for the Western Mindanao Command.
Pingli, who also goes by the name of Gafur, was linked to the kidnappings of local businessman Inocente Bautista in May 27, 2008 and Vicente Barrios on June 17, 2010.
Muyuela said the militant is under interrogation.
“Pingli’s arrest was made possible through the joint law enforcement operations of the military and police,” Muyuela said.
The Abu Sayyaf previously bombed a karaoke bar in Zamboanga City, injuring a policeman.