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Abu Sayyaf vows to behead 1 of 2 German hostages if new deadline lapses

Roel Pareño (The Philippine Star) - October 2, 2014 - 7:28pm

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines - The Abu Sayyaf group holding captive two German nationals has moved its ultimatum to execute by beheading one of the two hostages, its spokesman said Thursday afternoon.

Abu Rami, spokesman of the Al-Harakatul Islamiyah, said in a phone-patch interview with newsmen here, that they have set the ultimatum on October 17 about 3 p.m. to behead one of German captives. 

“The day of warning is already soon to begin on Oct. 10, 2014, we are going to tell you now about the ultimatum which will be on October 17, Friday 2014 at 3 o’clock in the afternoon and that you can not see one of them alive,” Abu Rami said.

Abu Sayyaf explained that the October 10 deadline was just a premise of their warning to execute the captives if the Philippine and the Berlin governments fail to heed their two demands issued last Monday.

The Abu Sayyaf group demanded a P250-million ransom and for Germany to drop its support on the United State government's campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in exchange for the safe release of Dr. Stefan Viktor Okonek, 74, and Henrike Dielen, 55.

The two were seized from a yacht by the Abu Sayyaf militants last April while sailing near Rio Tubbataha off Palawan.

Abu Rami said they have not told yet the two German captives of their decision and ultimatum.

“We will just tell them a day before the execution where one of them will leave this world,” Abu Rami said. 

Abu Rami said their group decided to behead their captive to show they were serious of their warnings. “If they thought we were just kidding, we can not just play with the Shariah of the Al-Harakatul Islamiyah.”

The Abu Sayyaf spokesman said the German government has not contacted them to negotiate for the safety of the two.

“We felt we were already insulted by that government,” Abu Rami said.

He said there is no other recourse to save the victims but to comply with their demands.

The Abu Sayyaf did not allow any of its German captives to speak but said their conditions continued to get worse.

Abu Rami said that the ransom will not be their priority as it will be distributed to the people for their livelihood and partly will be used to strengthen their force which he described as “programmed protocol.”

He also said they were not asking for financial support to the ISIS as they have been promised of financial assistance.

Meanwhile, he said the deployment of additional troops in Sulu has not affected their decision except that they will not be sure of the safety of the hostages from any possible encounter. 

At least four battalions of soldiers have been deployed in this region and many of the soldiers were directed to Sulu for a holistic operation to address the security situation of the province.

ABU ABU RAMI ABU SAYYAF AL-HARAKATUL ISLAMIYAH DR. STEFAN VIKTOR OKONEK HENRIKE DIELEN ISLAMIC STATE OF IRAQ AND SYRIA PHILIPPINE AND THE BERLIN RAMI RIO TUBBATAHA
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