Friday, August 21, 2009

2 killed in foiled kidnap of Koreans in southern Philippines

KIDAPAWAN CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / August 21, 2009)–Policemen killed two gunmen in a firefight early Friday after they stormed a small hotel in a failed attempt to kidnap two South Korean holidaymakers in the southern Philippines.

Police said three gunmen managed to escape and that security forces were tracking down the trio in the town of Santo Nino in South Cotabato province.

The gunmen stormed the Signature Place where the foreigners and local guests were staying, but policemen who were notified about the siege foiled the possible kidnappings of the Koreans.

“There is a pursuit operation and soldiers and policemen are tracking down the gunmen,” Colonel Jonathan Ponce, a spokesman for the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, told the Mindanao Examiner.

Ponce said the security forces pursuing the gunmen are members of the newly formed anti-terror and anti-kidnapping group called Task Force 12-Alpha.

“We still do not know what group these armed men belong, but we are sure they are planning to kidnap the two Koreans,” Ponce said without further elaborating. (With a report from Geo Solmerano)

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