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Abu Sayyaf frees mayor's son more than a year after abduction

The Abu Sayyaf has released the son of Mayor Eddie Quimbo of Labason, Zamboanga del Norte, after more than a year in captivity, the military said Thursday.

Jed Quimbo, 28, was freed on December 30 at Barangay Anuling, according to the military's Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom). He was abducted on September 6, 2017, in Labason by six armed men.

Quimbo was turned over to his brother Justin and former Sulu governor Abdusakur Tan, and then rushed to Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital in Busbus, Jolo, for debriefing and medical check-up.

He was later brought to Wesmincom's headquarters at Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City, after which he was formally turned over to Mayor Quimbo and their other relatives.

According to the Wesmincom, five more hostages — three foreigners and two Filipinos — remain in custody of the Abu Sayyaf.

“With our operational accomplishments, we anticipate that more captives will be freed by the Abu Sayyaf,” said Lieutenant General Arnel Dela Vega, Wesmincom commander.

Dela Vega said combat and intelligence operations are being strengthened to pressure the Abu Sayyaf to surrender and release their hostage victims.  —Anna Felicia Bajo/KBK, GMA News