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 2 Indonesian Boats Hijacked, Military Vessels to Patrol Philippines Border

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BerichtOnderwerp: 2 Indonesian Boats Hijacked, Military Vessels to Patrol Philippines Border   zo 17 apr 2016 - 6:56

From the Jakarta Globe, Saturday 16 April 2016

Jakarta. National Military Chief Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo confirmed reports of a pirate hijacking of two Indonesian ships by a group believed to be linked to the Abu Sayyaf militant organization on Friday in the Malaysia-Philippines border waters.

“It is indicated that this is the Abu Sayyaf group, but we are still investigating to confirm the allegation,” Gatot told in East Jakarta, after attending Indonesian Special Forces (Koppasus) anniversary on Saturday morning.

Gatot said two battleships will be deployed to monitor the border areas — KRI Badau-841 and KRI Slamet Riyadi-352.

The four-star general said Indonesia has prepared troops to prevent further pirate attacks, as well as taking part in joint border patrols with Malaysia and the Philippines.

Meanwhile, Chief Security Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said he is still unable to confirm the motives behind the hijacking.

“We are looking whether it is politically related or [demanding] ransom, such as in Somalia,” Luhut said, adding the government has evaluated necessary measures to address the recent repeated hijackings.

“The military commander had informed us [the government] to be focused on several issues ... A crisis center has been running under the ministry and we are observing all possibilities,” Luhut said.

Six crew members, including one injured in a shootout, have been rescued, while four others were kidnapped.

Two Indonesian ships, the TB Henry tugboat and the Cristi barge, were hijacked in the waters of Malaysia-Philippines border earlier this month. The 10 Indonesian crew members were all taken hostage

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