The intensified operations launched by combined troops of the Joint Task Force Sulu, BPATS, and the Talipao PNP led to the immediate release of the two kidnap victims at around 6pm of June 20.
Troops promptly responded after receiving reports that at 2:20am of the same day, the half-sister of Talipao Mayor Nebukadnezar Tulawie, Edelyn Tulawie, 27 years old; and her mother, Addang Tulawie, 57 years old were forcibly taken by 20 armed men, later identified as Abu Sayyaf Group members under Hatib Hajan Sawajaan, at their residence in Barangay Kandaga-Boundary Kuhaw, Talipao, Sulu.Their residence is about 5 km away from the town center of Talipao.
At around 6pm, combined elements of the 2nd Special Forces Battalion led by Captain Ambrocio, Barangay Peacekeeping Action Teams, and PNP led by PCI Lango responded to the report that the perpetrators together with their hostages were sighted along the boundary of Barangay Sinumaan and Barangay Kagay, Talipao.
“We recognize the efforts of the Local Government of Talipao headed by Mayor Tulawie and all members of the community who did their best to help in the rescue of Edelyn and Addang Tulawie. It is the peoples’ participation and their resolve against the kidnappers that forced the bandits to abandon the victims in the area where they kept them for several hours. This also signals that the people will no longer tolerate the banditry perpetrated by the ASG in their community.”
Brigadier General Divino Rey Pabayo, Commander of the Joint Task Force Sulu
While scouring the area, the operating troops were able to rescue the two hostages in the forested area and were immediately brought to the residence of former Talipao Mayor Tambrin Tulawie.
The troops later escorted the victims to Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Hospital in Jolo, Sulu for medical check-up and trauma debriefing.
Lieutenant General Arnel B. Dela Vega, Commander of the Western Mindanao Command said that he ordered the intensification of intelligence monitoring to locate the perpetrators for them to face the full force of the law.
“We will run after them. We are confident that with the Local Chief Executives’ and the peoples’ support in the municipalities of Sulu, we will finally rid the province of the ASG that has been spreading turmoil in the area,” Lt Gen Dela Vega said.