De Castro as negotiator up to Sulu
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang is leaving it to the Sulu crisis committee and Vice Noli de Castro to decide on the reported demand of the Abu Sayyaf for De Castro to negotiate for the release of three workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) they have been holding hostage since January.
The crisis committee, headed by Sulu Governor Abdusakur Tan and Vice Governor Lady Anne Sahidula, has been in contact with the abductors of Swiss national Andreas Notter, Italian Eugenio Vagni, and Filipina Mary Jean Lacaba.
Press Secretary Cerge Remonde said the Abu Sayyaf demand will also be referred to the National Security Council (NSC).
“We are leaving this matter to the local crisis committee, whatever the recommendation of the crisis committee is, we will listen to that, and of course,” Remonde told radio station dzXL.
“And of course, kay Kabayan [De Castro’s nickname] kung ano ang kaniyang reaksiyon sa bagay na ito [And of course, we leave it to De Castro to react to this],” he added.
But at the same time, Remonde was lukewarm to the demand, saying, “Hindi pwede naman siguro iyong ganyan na mangingidnap ka, pagkatapos magkakaroon ka ng mga demands [You cannot just pull off kidnappings then make demands].”
Notter, head of the ICRC in Western Mindanao; Vagni and Lacaba were abducted after inspecting the Sulu provincial jail.
View article as posted on INQUIRER.net