Citing sketchy details, the military's Western Mindanao Command spokesman Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang said Kevin Lunsmann, 14, was freed around 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Bulingan village in Lamitan City, Basilan province.
Cabangbang said as Xinhua-0ANA reports, the teenager was with the commander of the Army's 32nd Infantry Battalion, Lt. Col. Russel Pompa, and brought to the headquarters of the Army's 104th Brigade, also based in the city.
Cabangbang could not immediately say if ransom was paid for the release of the boy. "(I have) no information on ransom," he said, adding the boy will get medical attention and a checkup to know if he is in good condition.
"We are still verifying if he (Kevin Lunsmann) escaped or freed. What I can say is he is safe," provincial police chief Senior Supt. Alex Lineses said, adding the Army's 104th Brigade had turned over the boy to American forces based in the southern Philippine region of Mindanao.
Kevin Lunsmann, his mother Gaerfa Lunsmann, and Filipino cousin Romnick Jackaria were abducted by a group linked with the secessionist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) at the Sacol island in Zamboanga City in July and turned over to Abu Sayyaf terrorists in Basilan, the military said.
Gaerfa Lunsmann was released by the kidnappers in October. The following month, Jackaria was able to escape as the kidnappers were evading pursuing government soldiers. (*)