Thursday, October 06, 2011

Philippine police rescue midwife kidnapped by Abu Sayyaf

ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 6, 2011) – Police forces rescued a government midwife kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf after a brief firefight Thursday in Sulu province in the southern Philippines, officials said.

Officials said Evangeline Taverisma, 55, was rescued at around 5:20 a.m. in the village called Lanao Dakula near Parang town after a 10-minute firefight.

“The fighting lasted about 10 minutes and the Abu Sayyaf escaped leaving the woman behind. There is an ongoing operation against the Abu Sayyaf,” Superintendent Amil Baanan, operations chief of the provincial police force, told the Mindanao Examiner.

Baanan, who was one of those who led the rescue operation, said police forces led by Inspector Nasaruddin Jailani, intercepted Abu Sayyaf militants and their hostage and a firefight ensued.

He said the woman was handed over to Senior Superintendent Antonio Freyra, the Sulu police chief, and later brought to hospital for medical examination.

“She is okay and was handed over to Doctor Farah Omar, the head of the Sulu provincial hospital, in (the capital town of) Jolo for medical examination,” Baanan told reporters.

Governor Sakur Tan, head of the provincial crisis management committee, praised the rescue of the woman and ordered local doctors to take care of the midwife. “Everything is okay and Mrs. Taverisma is being attended by our doctors to ensure that her health is okay,” he said.

Abu Sayyaf militants seized Taverisma on August 3 while on her way for work in the village of Tagbak in Indanan.

The military tagged the woman’s kidnappers as Nasir Timbang and a militant leader identified only as Palu. But the police also implicated another Abu Sayyaf sub-leader, Muhmar Jikiri, in the kidnapping who demanded P5 million ransom from Taverisma’s family.

The group was also behind the kidnapping of merchant couple last month in July.

The Abu Sayyaf has been involved in terrorism and kidnappings for ransom in the southern Philippines. (Mindanao Examiner)

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