AFP eyes Abus in kidnap of British man, wife
Jaime Laude (The Philippine Star) - October 10, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — With still no contact or proof of life, authorities believe that a British businessman and his wife who were snatched in a coastal village in Tukuran, Zamboanga del Sur and their captors are constantly on the move.

Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief, said the kidnappers are on the run with their victims to  evade government forces.

Sobejana said the kidnappers could be hiding the couple in mainland Zamboanga peninsula.

The couple were seized as they arrived at a resort, which they owned, about two kilometers away from the town proper on Friday last week.

The kidnappers have yet to contact the relatives of the victims.

Sobejana said the military is not ruling out the involvement of Abu Sayyaf bandits who have contact with lawless groups operating in Zamboanga.

“That’s the end game of this kidnapping,” he said, noting that Abu Sayyaf bandits are known to subcontract lawless groups for a fee.

Sobejana said a naval blockade is in place in Basilan, Sulu and Cotabato to prevent the kidnappers from handing over the couple to the Abu Sayyaf.

“We are closely monitoring the coastal areas in Zamboanga del Sur as well as the Moro Gulf, specifically Lanao del Sur... Cotabato and Basilan Strait,” he said.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana assured British Ambassador Daniel Pruce that Westmincom troopers and local police officers are doing their best to rescue the victims.

Lorenzana said Pruce is constantly communicating with him, asking for updates on the incident.

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