Philippines: December 22, 2001


The relative success of Abu Sayyaf in collecting some large ransoms has encouraged other current, or former, members of MILF to try it. One group of former MILF, calling themselves the Pentagon gang, have staged a number of kidnappings in the past few months. But this group has not gotten much publicity outside the Philippines, even though they have nabbed some foreigners. The police and the military have been more successful at hunting down Pentagon members and have rescued hostages and killed and captured many gang members. But kidnapping for ransom is becoming more popular among rebel and criminal elements.


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