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Emerging patterns from Duterte’s erratic rhetoric

HONG KONG (SE): Despite the highly confusing and seemingly contradictory statements on foreign policy articulated by the president of The Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, some patterns are beginning to emerge.

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Bishop denounces hostage beheading

MANILA (Agencies): Bishop Ruperto Santos of Balanga has condemned the beheading of a Canadian tourist held hostage for months by the Abu Sayyaf in Mindanao.

The bishop, who chairs the bishops’ Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People, expressed outrage over the execution of a 68-year old Canadian man, John Ridsdel, who was abducted from a resort along with three others in September last year.

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Military massacred by the Abu Sayyaf

MANILA (UCAN): The deaths of 18 soldiers, who perished during a showdown with the Islamist group, the Abu Sayyaf, on April 9 in the southern Philippine island of Basilan, angered Bishop Martin Jumoad.

“I am really depressed and angry at why our soldiers are killed like chickens at the hands of the Abu Sayyaf,” the bishop of Basilan said. “What is happening to our government?”

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Slain suspect not priest’s kidnapper

MANILA (SE): Waning Abdulsalam, suspected to have been the leader of a group that has kidnapped foreigners for ransom, was killed by a joint police and military operation when he resisted arrest in Zamboanga Sibugay on March 13.

He was also suspected of being a member of the Abu Sayyaf and the leader of the group that kidnapped Columban Father Mick Sinnott from his home in Pagadian in 2009 (Sunday Examiner, 8 November 2009).

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