ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Mar. 19, 2010) – Government troops rescued a kidnapped school canteen manager after arresting one of her captors in the southern Philippine province of Basilan, officials told the Mindanao Examiner on Friday.
Officials said Examinda Lindio was rescued at a house owned by Arvin Artiaga in Basilan’s Lamitan City on Thursday afternoon. Her rescue came about after Artiaga was arrested by soldiers, said Army First Lieutenant Steffani Cacho, a spokeswoman for the Western Mindanao Command.
“Artiaga was arrested by the government soldiers for his involvement in the abduction of Examinda Lindo,” she said.
It was unknown whether Artiaga is a member of any rebel groups in Basilan province, several nautical miles south of Zamboanga City.
Police earlier tagged Abu Sayyaf militants under Pulah Montong. It said the woman was reported missing March 6 until the kidnappers contacted Lindio’s family to say that she was being held hostage. The gang demanded two million pesos for her safe release.
Police and military previously warned that the Abu Sayyaf may strike at any opportune time. The Abu Sayyaf has been blamed for many kidnappings and terrorism in the southern Philippines.
Just this month, security forces captured an Abu Sayyaf base in Basilan and killed at least 6 militants in an ensuing firefight. (Mindanao Examiner)