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May 06, 2011

MANILA – Philippine troops arrested a member of the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group who is now working as a security guard at a hotel in the country’s capital, police said Friday.

Chief Supt. Samuel Pagdilao, chief of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, said they apprehended the suspect, Arabani Jakiran, 39, Thursday morning in front of the Pacific Plaza Tower hotel in Taguig city.

Jakiran, a native of Sulu province, was linked to several kidnapping incidents in the south. He was allegedly among the Abu Sayyaf men who in June 2001 kidnapped 21 tourists from the posh Dos Palmas resort in the western Philippine province of Palawan.

Pagdilao said Jakiran has a standing warrant of arrest for kidnapping for ransom case issued by Basilan Judge Danilo Buloy.

PNP Chief Director General Raul Bacalzo said Jakiran’s arrest is in line with their thrust to intensify operations against the al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf following the recent killing of al- Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in Pakistan.

Bacalzo said the police establishment has renewed its campaign against the Abu Sayyaf “to prevent them from carrying out retaliatory attacks in the wake of (Osama’s) death.”