German hostage beheaded by Philippine Islamists: Govt

Philippine marines inspect motorists at a check point along a highway in Indanan town, Sulu province in Mindanao on Monday (AFP)

Manila - 

Islamic militants in the Philippines have beheaded the German hostage they were holding for ransom, the government in Manila said on Monday.

A video posted by the extremist Abu Sayyaf group, which was monitored by intelligence group SITE, showed Jurgen Kantner being killed by a knife-wielding man. Shortly after the video appeared, government envoy Jesus Dureza confirmed the German’s death.

“We grieve as we strongly condemn the barbaric beheading of yet another kidnap victim,” Dureza said in a statement.

“Up to the last moment, many organisations including the Armed Forces of the Philippines exhausted all efforts to save his life. We all tried our best. But to no avail,” said Dureza.

Military officials in the south said they still had not yet found the German’s body. The Abu Sayyaf, blamed for the worst terror attacks in Philippine history, had previously demanded a ransom of 30mn pesos (US$600,000) be paid by Sunday to spare the 70 year old.

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