Cosme Aballes was beheaded shortly after being kidnapped on Good Friday by a group of bandits consisting of members of Abu Sayyaf and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The kidnapping took place on the island of Basilan in the South West of the Philippines. Another man, Eman Chavez, was kidnapped at the same time. His fate is unknown. This brings the total number of hostages held on Basilan to seven.

On the nearby island of Jolo (Sulu province), two Red Cross workers are still being held by Abu Sayyaf. The Philippine military is now blocking all food and water supplies to the kidnappers’ camp.

“I think the hostage crisis won’t last much longer. We will not allow them to dictate on us. We are the ones supposed to be making the demands on them, that they release the hostages or else” said Sulu Governor Abdusakur Tan.

He is quite right. Making concessions to terrorists is the easy way out in the short term, but encourages an industry of kidnapping.

But what a scary call to make. Please keep praying for the hostages – there and in Somalia.