- One of the Indonesian sailors abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has escaped his captors in Sulu
- According to reports, the sailor has sneaked away from his captors upon reaching the mangrove areas of Barangay Bual and Bato-Itum
- As of press time, approximately 20 foreigners and locals are still being held captive by the Abu Sayyaf Group
Police have announced on Wednesday, August 17, that one of the seven Indonesian sailors abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), has escaped in Sulu.
According to Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom), Mohammad Safyan, a 28-year-old Indonesian sailor in June, was found by locals along the shorelines of Barangay Bual, Luuk town at around 7:30 in the morning.
Reports say that the sailor was able to escape his Abu Sayyaf captors upon reaching the mangrove areas of Barangays Bual and Bato-Itum, after threats of being beheaded.
The locals saw Safyan swimming to the shore, where he was rescued before he was brought to Luuk municipal police station. The Indonesian sailor will be brought to Sulu provincial police office for documentation before he would be taken home to his family.
Sulu police said that Safyan was among the crew members of a tugboat kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf members in the maritime borders of the Philippines on last June 23. The WesMinCom's report filed in June said that only seven - including Safyan - of the 13 crewmen of the Indonesian tugboat were taken by the bandits.
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According to a statement released by WestMinCom, “Troops of the Joint Task Force Sulu were directed to scour the area and use all available assets to possibly locate the remaining kidnap victims and conduct operations to rescue them."
If the military records are to be believed, approximately 20 foreigners and locals are still being held captive by the Abu Sayyaf Group in the mountains of Sulu.