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ZAMBOANGA CITY – Security forces shot dead an Abu Sayyaf sub-leader linked to the kidnapping of a German couple and a Dutch wildlife photographer in the Philippines.

Arod Wahing, who had escaped military campaign in the southern Sulu province, was killed Monday in his hideout in the village of Parian-Baunoh in Basilan’s Lantawan town where soldiers and police commandos tracked him down.

Two other cohorts were also captured by security forces and being interrogated by the army. Several weapons had been seized by troops from Wahing’s hideout.

Wahing, a henchman of Abu Sayyaf leader Radulan Sahiron, was killed after he tried to fight off security forces sent to arrest him after a court in Sulu issued a warrant for his capture.

The slain militant commander was implicated in the April 2014 kidnapping of German scientist Stefan Viktor Okonek and Henrike Dielen who were taken off their yacht near Palawan province while on their way to Sabah in Malaysia.

The duo was freed seven months later after Germany paid an equivalent of P250 million ransoms stashed in several black bags and delivered by a private jet to Sulu province. The Abu Sayyaf even posted a photo on social media showing the huge pile of ransom money they received.

Wahing was also linked by authorities to the kidnapping of Ewold Horn and Swiss wildlife photographer Lorenzo Vinciguerra in the coastal village of Parangan in Panglima Sugala town in Tawi-Tawi province in February 2012.

Vinciguerra managed to escape from his guards and recovered by soldiers in December 2014 after he allegedly killed one of his guards – Juhurim Hussien – with a bolo.

Horn, who joined the pro-ISIS group after developing Stockholm syndrome after 7 years in captivity, was killed during a firefight with army soldiers in May this year in Pansul village in Patikul town in Sulu. One of the wives of Sahiron was also slain in the fighting that left 8 soldiers wounded.

The Dutchman’s body was recovered along with the corpse of Mingayan Sahiron. (Zamboanga Post)


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