A 59-year-old Dutch birdwatcher, kidnapped in the Philippines in 2012 by an Islamic terrorist group, has been killed in battle between the terrorists and the army, the foreign ministry has confirmed.
Ewold Horn, his Swiss travelling companion and their guide were watching birds on the Tawi Tawi island group when they were attacked by five heavily-armed men and forced into a speedboat seven years ago.
Dutch foreign minister Stef Blok said he was shocked by the death and has had contact with Horn’s family. ‘I have asked my Filippino colleagues for clarification,’ he said.
‘After an hour and thirty minutes of gun battle, troops recovered the remains of Horn and that of Mingayan Sahiron, the second wife of the Abu Sayyaf top leader,’ local army chief Divino Rey Pabayo said on the Philippines army website.
‘Horn was shot by one of his guards when he tried to escape from the Abu Sayyaf during this morning’s gunfight,’ the general said.
Horn’s Swiss companion escaped in 2014 but Horn was too weak to attempt the breakaway.
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