The Philippines has confirmed the death of Robert Hall, a Canadian citizen who was beheaded by Abu Sayyaf group. The outgoing president Benigno Aquino condemned the murder of Robert Hall.
A Philippines army spokesperson said that a severed head had been found near a Catholic cathedral of a remote southern Island. Another Norwegian man and a Filipino woman are still in captivity.
In a statement on Tuesday Aquino confirmed the beheading and condemned the monstrous act. He said, “This latest heinous crime serves to strengthen our government’s resolve to put an end to this reign of terror and banditry.”
Previously, Canadian Prime Minister Justine Trudeau stated that it was likely that Hall is the next victim of the terror group.
Although the group claims allegiance to ISIS, experts have always said that the only purpose behind these kidnapping and brutal killings is collecting the ransom. Over the decades, numerous Filipinos and foreigners had been abducted in the Southern Philippines and different parts of Malaysia to get ransom, as stated by BBC. Some of these kidnapped people were released after their demand had been met but others were killed when the ransom was not paid.
Meanwhile, President–elect Rodrigo Duterte’s national security advisor said that the new government, which is going to take charge on June 30, would “take a stronger action against lawlessness in the south”.
Duterte’s adviser Hermogenes Esperon told Reuters, “We cannot allow this situation to continue, this should end once and for all.”
Interestingly, some questioned Duterte’s terrorist ties which were considered as a threat to Filipino soldiers lives, reports Open Source Investigation. The report also stated that Filipino soldiers who fought the terror group NPA, which has close ties with the President-elect, would be unsafe under Duterte’s presidency.
Back in 2011, Rodrigo Duterte lashed at the US government for linking him with a shadowy vigilante group Davao Death Squad (DDS). He, in return, accused the US of conspiring to the twin bombing in Davao City more than a decade ago, as per CNN.