MANILA — Despite earlier announcement that the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has extended the deadline for the beheading of one of the two captive German nationals until 5 p.m. Friday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said it will not negotiate with the terrorist group.
AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc made this announcement as the ASG is calling for the withdrawal of government forces in Sulu as one of the conditions not to behead one of the German captives.
Cabunoc stressed that it is not government policy to negotiate with terrorists.
He also said that they could not give exact details on the whereabouts of the captive German nationals as of this time.
Cabunoc added that they have no information yet on whether the ASG has decided to behead one of their captives as the 5 p.m. deadline has now lapsed.
But, he stressed that beheading innocent civilians is frowned upon by Islam.
The AFP public affairs office chief declined to give details on what the soldiers and police are doing now due to security reasons.
However, he said that government forces will ensure that no civilians will be affected should fighting start in earnest.
Viktor Stefan Okonek, 71 and Herite Dieter, 55, were captured by the Abu Sayyaf in Palawan last April while en route to Sabah.