Two Indonesian hostages in the Philippines freed

Singapore (ANTARA News) - Two Indonesians taken as hostages by Abu Sayyaf militant group in the Philippines were rescued on Thursday morning, Foreign Affairs Minister Retno LP Marsudi said.

"I would like to convey an information about our nationals taken as hostages. We have an information from our Consulate General in Davao City that on Sept 7, 2017 at 6.30 a.m., two Indonesian hostages were freed," Retno stated here on Thursday.

The two Indonesians are Saparudin bin Koni and Syawal bin Mariam, the minister added.

Currently, the two have been shifted to the joint task force headquarters in Sulu for health checkup.

"This is a common procedure for freed hostages," she explained.

On Friday (Sept 8), the two Indonesians would be transferred to the Army Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

"The Indonesian Consulate General in Davao City would meet the two Indonesians in Samboanga. They could then be returned home to Indonesia," Retno noted.

The two Indonesians are crews of a Malaysian fishing ship Madai II Kunak. They were abducted by Abu Sayyaf militant group on Nov 19 last year in Batu Lahat waters of Sabah, Malaysia.

The militants reportedly held more than a dozen hostages as captives in Jolo and the nearby province of Basilan.

"Tomorrow morning, we will have an update on the issue," Retno concluded. (*)