PNP claims MILF abducted 5 villagers as "human shields"

Chief Supt. Felicisimo Khu, head of the task force on law enforcement in Region 12, identified the kidnap victims as Roy Martin, leader of Sitio Lipi-lipian of Barangay Marquez in Esperanza; his wife Shiela, two children, and a certain Jun Bello.  

Khu, in an interview over dxND, said some 100 MILF rebels coming from the boundary of Maguindanao and Sultan Kudarat harassed Barangay Marquez, a farming village, and carted away farmers’ produce and their working animals. 

As of press time, Khu said the rebels were still in the area.  “We already sent forces in the area, including soldiers, to pursue the rebels and rescue the family,” said Khu.

The Friday kidnapping in Esperanza was the second incident in Southwest Mindanao since last week. 

On December 28, three farmers were also abducted in Alamada, a hinterland town in North Cotabato, and also carted farm animals.   The farmers were later released unharmed somewhere between the boundary Lanao del Sur and North Cotabato, police reported. 

MILF civil-military affairs chief Eid Kabalu could not be reached for comment.  (Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)

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