Monday, September 19, 2011

Kidnapped Filipina wife of British engineer rescued in the Philippines

Photos obtained by the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner shows a military nurse attends to Luisa Morrison, Filipina wife of British engineer Raymond Morrison, who was rescued by army soldiers Monday, September 19, 2011 after a firefight with Abu Sayyaf militants in Basilan province in the southern Philippines. The woman, who owns a beauty salon in ipil town in Zamboanga Sibugay province, was kidnapped September 3 by three men who posed as customers.

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Sept. 19, 2011) – Philippine soldiers rescued the Filipino wife of a British engineer after a clash Monday afternoon with Abu Sayyaf militants in the southern province of Basilan, officials said.

Officials said Luisa Morrison, 34, was rescued by Scout Rangers and brought to an army base in the province. The fighting in Baiwas village in the town of Sumisip killed 3 Abu Sayyaf gunmen and wounded at least 7 more.

One soldier was also shot and wounded by the Abu Sayyaf in the clash, said Army Lieutenant Colonel Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command.

“Three Abu Sayyaf were killed and seven others wounded in the fighting. One soldier, Private First Class Arjae de Ramos, was also injured in the clash,” he said.

He said Morrison suffered slight injuries in both legs, but it was not immediately known whether she had been shot or not. “She is now safe and in the base of the 4th Scout Ranger Battalion. We cannot fly her out because it was already too dark, but she is okay,” he said.

Cabangbang said villagers tipped off the military about the presence of gunmen in the village, who turned out to be members of the Abu Sayyaf. The fighting erupted after soldiers caught up with the gunmen under Abu Sayyaf sub-leaders Radzmer Jannatul and Juhayver.

The woman, who owns the RL Salon and Spa in the town of Ipil in Zamboanga Sibugay province, was seized September 3 by three men who posed as customers.

She was forced into a small van which was later found abandoned and burned in the coastal village of Bangkerohan. Her husband, Raymond Morrison, 51, works at an oil rig off Malaysia.

The Abu Sayyaf is still holding an Indian national Bijukolara Veetil, 36, who was kidnapped in June while visiting the parents of his Filipina wife in Patikul town in Sulu province.

A Malaysian lizard trader, Mohammad Nasaruddin Bensaidin, 38, from Kuala Lumpur, was also seized in Sulu’s Indanan town on April. The militants are also holding a Japanese treasure hunter, Katayama Mamaito, who was abducted in Sulu’s Pangutaran town in July last year.

The group also seized two fishermen, Renato Panisales and Wennie Ferrer – all employees of the Mega Fishing Corporation in Zamboanga City - at sea off Sulu in March. Their companion, Jonald Ocsimar, was freed in July after his family paid P300,000 ransom.

In August, Abu Sayyaf militants snatched a government midwife, Evangeline Taverisma, 55, in Tagbak village on Indanan town also in Sulu province. She was on her way to report for work when seized by gunmen whose leader was identified as Nasir Timbang.

Another faction of the Abu Sayyaf group is also holding a US woman, Gerfa Yeatts Lunsmann, 50, and her son Kevin Eric Lunsmann, 14, including a Filipino nephew Romnick Jackaria, 19, after snatching them from a beach house on Tictabon Island in Zamboanga City.

The hostages are believed to be in Basilan, just several nautical miles south of Zamboanga.

On September 15, kidnappers freed a nine-year old boy, Randelle Talania, after six months in captivity in Basilan province.

Talania was kidnapped in March in the town of Titay in Zamboanga Sibugay province and brought him to Basilan and returned him to his town after his family paid ransom. (Mindanao Examiner)

No comments: