MANILA –The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is strongly discouraging the payment of ransom to the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) as videos of 70-year-old German captive, Juergen Kantner, urging his government to pay the bandit’s PHP30 million ransom demand, were spread all over the Internet.
Payment of the ransom will further embolden the terrorists and give them more funds to buy the loyalty of the communities they are hiding in, said AFP public affairs office chief Col. Edgard Arevalo on Tuesday.
In the same vein, he said the government does not pay ransom or negotiate with terrorists.
Arevalo stressed the military will exert all efforts to rescue Kantner from his ASG captors.
“We will exert all efforts to rescue him (Kantner), especially that we now have continuing operation against the ASG which has been yielding good outcomes, so we are still positive that we will be able to rescue him,” he added.
Kantner, in the video, said the bandits are threatening to behead him this coming Feb. 26, around 3 p.m. if the PHP30 million ransom are not paid before that date.
Kantner was kidnapped by the ASG bandits while his yacht “Rockall” was cruising off Sulu waters last November.
His companion, 56-year-old Sabine Mertz, was allegedly raped and killed by the bandits.