Manila – The Philippine military on Thursday advised Norway and Canada not to pay ransom for the release of their citizens abducted from an island resort in September.
Colonel Padilla spokesman of the military, who gave the advice, said the Islamists would continue with kidnapping activities if people heed their demands.
Suspected Islamist militants, who abducted John Ridsdel and Robert Hall from Canada as well as Kjartan Sekkingst from Norway and Filipino Marites Flor, demanded 1 billion pesos (21 million dollars) for each of them.
The money is the largest ransom ever requested by the Abu Sayyaf Islamist group.
In the video of the demand released by US based SITE Intelligence Group, which tracks terrorist activities worldwide, the hostages appealed to their governments to pay up.
“The government of Philippine could not dictate what other governments will do in the end, but would continue to abide by its own no-ransom policy, Padilla said.
The hostages were seized on Sept. 21 from a resort on the southern island of Samal Island.
They were believed to have been tak
[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”70560″]en to Jolo Island, 1,000 kilometres south of Manila, where they are being held captive in the jungle.
The al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf group, had been blamed for some of the deadliest terrorist attacks in the Philippines, and several high profile kidnappings of foreigners for ransom.
The group is also believed to be holding a Dutch man, two Malaysians and an Italian priest. (dpa/NAN)