PNP, AFP jointly working to find, rescue remaining ASG hostages — DILG

MANILA, Philippines — Secretary Mel Senen Sarmiento of the Department of Interior and Local Government (C) on Tuesday assured that the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will continue to find and rescue the remaining captives of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).

This was after Canadian national John Ridsel, one of the four hostages taken by terrorist group last Sept. 21 in Island Garden City of Samal, Davao Del Norte, was beheaded by his captors.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Canadian national John Ridsdel who had been held captive and confirmed killed by Abu Sayyaf militants. It is unfortunate that this had to happen despite our efforts to negotiate for his release along with his fellow captives,” Sarmiento said in a statement.

“However, we should not allow ourselves to be terrorized by this gruesome incident. This is what these terrorists want,” he added.

Sarmiento also assured that the Philippine National Police (PNP) will continue working with the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the local government units to find and secure the safety of the remaining captives.

“I join our entire nation and the people of Canada in praying for Ridsdel. May his sacrifice inspire us even more to strive harder to defeat these barbaric zealots and finally let peace take its place in Mindanao,” he noted. Christopher Lloyd Caliwan/PNA/