Abu Sayyaf group sets new deadline for ransom

admin   •   May 17, 2016   •   2742

Abu Sayyaf hostages Canadian Robert Hall and Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad appeal to the Canadian, Norwegian and Philippine government on an uploaded video by the rebel group.

Abu Sayyaf hostages Canadian Robert Hall and Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad appeal to the Canadian, Norwegian and Philippine government on an uploaded video by the rebel group.

The terrorist group Abu Sayyaf is demanding P600 million as ransom for its Canadian hostage Robert Hall and Norwegian hostage Kjartan Sekkingstad.

ASG uploaded a new video setting a new ultimatum for payment of ransom on June 13, at 3pm.

If demand is not met, ASG threatened to behead either of the two foreign captives.

In the video, Hall and Sekkingstad are both wearing orange t-shirts and are surrounded by armed men.

Hall appealed to the Canadian and Philippine governments for help.

Meanwhile, the focused military operations of the Armed Forces of the Philippines to capture ASG and rescue the victims are not affected by the new deadline and video.

“Our operations in the areas where there are kidnap for ransom groups like the Abu Sayyaf, it did not stop during the elections,” AFP Spokesperson BGen. Restituto Padilla Jr. assures.

The AFP Spokesperson Brigadier General Restituto Padilla Jr. also said, now that election is over , the military can now further intensify its operations against the terrorist group.

“Our forces return to their pro-active stance and we continuously intensify our operations as well as law enforcement operations in those areas.” Padilla said.

Meanwhile, AFP still has to validate and confirm the new video uploaded by the Abu Sayyaf group.

On April 25, ASG killed John Ridsdel, one of the two Canadian hostages, after failing to pay the amount of P300 million ransom.

AFP sends soldier-athletes to 2019 SEA Games

Robie de Guzman   •   November 11, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is expecting its soldier-athletes to perform well in the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games which is set to be held in the country from November 30 to December 11.

Around 127 soldiers on active duty will join the Filipino contingent competing in this year’s SEA Games.

Overall, the AFP is sending over 400 soldier-athletes, coaches, and emergency preparedness and response teams and security personnel from the military’s Regular and Reserve Forces.

A send-off ceremony, led by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and AFP chief of staff Noel Clement, was held for the AFP contingent on Monday, Nov. 11.

“We have all been tirelessly working for this momentous event. We are able to lay down the joint operational guidelines for our troops who will be deployed. Similarly, our soldiers have relentlessly trained for their various events. These are clear indications of our strong will and desire for a safe and successful conduct of the Games,” Clement was quoted as saying in a statement.

“On behalf of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, I offer my heartfelt support to our athlete-soldiers and coaches joining the 30th SEA Games. Show the world your discipline and dedication and may you have God’s favor” he added.

The 30th SEA Games will open on November 30 in Bulacan.

Around 12,000 athletes and their coaches, 1,000 international media members, 15,000 volunteers, and spectators, among others are expected to participate and watch the games.

It is said to be the biggest SEA Games yet as it features 56 sports and 530 events in 44 venues. Although these events will be conducted in various parts of Luzon, a bulk of these tournaments will be held in Metro Manila.

The closing ceremony of the games will be in the New Clark City in Tarlac on December 11.

AFP to heighten security in Mindanao following death of 3 suicide bombers

Maris Federez   •   November 6, 2019

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Western Mindanao Command (WESMINCOM) is set to intensify the security in Mindanao following the slaying of three suicide bombers in Indanan, Sulu on Tuesday (November 5).

AFP-WESMINCOM chief LtGen. Cirilo Sobejana said part of the security adjustment that they will implement is the stricter chokepoint and checkpoint operations, as well as the conduct of foot patrol in the different areas in Mindanao.

“I directed all commanders and under Western Mindanao Command to take extra miles to monitor the hostile plans of this threat group,” Sobejana said.

He added that they will not set aside the possibility that several members of the terrorist groups in the country are planning to wreak havoc after ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Bagdhadi was killed in a US Forces-led operation in northwest Syria.

The PNP, meanwhile, allayed the public’s fear brought about by the series of suicide bombings in the country.

PNP spokesperson PBGen Bernard Banac said the PNP and the AFP are in control of the situation in Mindanao and that there is nothing to be worried about.

“Sa ngayon ay mataas na ang ating level ng security sa bahagi ng Western Mindanao at yung nangyari kahapon at patunay na mahigpit ang ipinatutupad na seguridad doon,” said Banac.

The authorities said the death of the three suicide bombers had helped prevent the bomb threat in Metro Jolo. (from the report of Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

AFP chief Noel Clement promoted to rank of general

Robie de Guzman   •   October 30, 2019

Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Noel Clement receives his fourth star in a donning of ranks ceremony held on October 30, at the Department of National Defense presided by DND Undersecretary Cardozo Luna.

MANILA, Philippines – Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff Noel Clement has been promoted to the rank of general, more than a month after his appointment in September, the AFP Public Affairs Office said.

The donning of ranks ceremony, which was presided by Department of National Defense Undersecretary Cardozo Luna, was held on Wednesday.

Clement’s wife, Geraldine Anne, and their two sons witnessed the ceremony for the AFP chief’s donning of fourth star. Also present were the Commanders of the AFP Major Services and AFP Southern Luzon Command.

Clement took over the post as AFP chief of staff on September 24 after he was appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte.

He vowed that the military will sustain focus operations against communist rebels and other groups who pose threat to communities in a bid to end the armed insurgency in the country.

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