RealNews

Filipino Widow Abducted by Muslim Rebels

Unidentified men armed with automatic rifles yesterday seized a Filipino woman on her way to a Roman Catholic church on a southern island rife with Muslim guerillas and bandits, police said. Ms Gertrudes Tan was forced at gunpoint by five men to a speedboat on the island town of Siasi and then taken towards another island off mainland Jolo with policemen pursuing them in a boat. The gunmen got away because of their faster boat, police said. Regional police chief Acmad Omar said police teams were searching for the men and Ms Tan, the widow of a prominent local Muslim businessman. No one has claimed responsibility for the abduction, which police believe was done by Abu Sayyaf rebels. A faction of the Abu Sayyaf – a Muslim extremist outfit – and several bandit groups have a presence in the hinterlands of Jolo, about 940km south of Manila. Full Story

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