RealNews

Germany, Libya, Philippines Paid Ransom to "Terrorists": Negotiator

Germany, Libya and the Philippines paid 11 million dollars in ransoms to al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf guerrillas who kidnapped a group of western tourists in Malaysia in April 2000, the Filipino official who won their freedom has claimed. Roberto Aventajado, an aide to then Filipino president Joseph Estrada, recounted controversial details of his three-month effort to secure the release of 21 hostages held by the Abu Sayyaf group in his book, “140 Days of Terror”. German embassy press attache Henning Hansen told AFP that mission officials had not read the book. “We are not able to comment on what we do not know yet,” Hansen added. Libyan embassy staff here said ambassador Salem Adam is abroad and the mission did not wish to comment. Libya previously said it only pledged to give development aid to Jolo, an impoverished Muslim island that serves as a base of the Muslim Abu Sayyaf gunmen with alleged ties to the al-Qaeda network of Saudi-born militant Osama bin Laden. The Abu Sayyaf snatched German, French, South African, Finnish, and Lebanese tourists as well as Malaysian and Filipino staff from Malaysia’s Sipadan resort and shipped the captives to Jolo. Full Story

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