Friday, February 19, 2010

Sayyaf terror man linked to kidnap-slay of 2 Americans falls

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Feb. 19, 2010) – Philippine authorities arrested a wanted Abu Sayyaf militant accused of kidnapping three US citizens and 17 Filipino tourists at a posh resort nine years ago.

Security officials said Jumadali Arad was arrested late Thursday afternoon while trying to board a passenger ship bound for Zamboanga City.

Arad was among those who raided the Dos Palmas resort in Palawan province near central Philippines in 2001 and kidnapped US missionary couple, Martin and Gracia Burnham, and California man Guillermo Sobero and the Filipinos, and brought them to Basilan province, south of Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines.

Guillermo Sobero was beheaded in 2001 in Basilan while Martin Burnham was shot and killed in 2002 during a US-led military rescue operation in Mindanao. Gracia Burnham was also shot and wounded during the rescue operation.

“The arrest of Arad is part of the military’s continuing operation against terrorism,” said Army First Lieutenant Steffani Cacho, a regional military spokeswoman.

The Abu Sayyaf, which means “bearer of the sword, has been linked to many kidnappings of foreigners and terrorism in the southern Philippines and was linked by authorities to the al-Qaeda terror network of Osama bin Laden and the Indonesian Jemaah Islamiya. (Mindanao Examiner)

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