A Malaysian fisherman who held hostage by Abu Sayyaf militants in southern Philippines is now in critical condition after being shot by his captors yesterday.
Mindanao-based news portal Mindanews reported that Jari Abdullah, 34, from Sandakan, Sabah, was rescued by the Philippine Marine Battalion Landing Team 3 at around 4.25 pm yesterday, after he attempted to escape during a 15-minute crossfire between his Abu Sayyaf captors and the marines.
The report quoted Western Mindanao Command spokesperson Gerry Besana who confirmed Jari's condition.
"The kidnap victim tried to escape from his captors during the firefight but was shot by the Abu Sayyaf," Besana reportedly said, adding that Jari was found about 10 metres from the path where the militants withdrew after the firefight.
According to the report, Jari was airlifted to Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Hospital in Jolo, the capital town of Sulu province in southern Philippines.
"It seems that the victim is in very critical medical condition," Besana was quoted as saying.
It was previously reported that Abu Sayyaf militants had kidnapped Jari and two other Indonesian fishermen identified as Hari Ardiansya, 19, and Hariadin, 45, from Pegasus Reef, Kinabatangan, Sabah on Dec 6 last year.
Wisma Putra said in a statement today that it is in close contact with the local authorities for the latest updates on the situation through the consulate-general of Malaysia in Davao.
They are also currently monitoring the condition of Jari.
"The Foreign Minister has instructed the deputy secretary-general (bilateral affairs) to meet with the leaders of Sabah to appraise the Sabah State Government on the latest developments related to the kidnap victim," the statement read.