JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Indonesia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry handed over four fishermen, who were taken hostage by Abu Sayyaf militants, to their families on Monday, April 5.
The four Indonesian nationals were Arizal Kasta Miran, 30, Arsad Dahlan, 41, Andi Riswanti, 26, and Khairuldin Yai Kii, 15.
During the handing over ceremony, Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi has expressed commitment to work closely with Malaysia and the Philippines to ensure security in Sabah waters, where the Abu Sayyaf kidnap-for-ransom group often carries out their actions.
“Going forward, we will strengthen our preventive actions by intensifying security in Sabah waters through the cooperation with the Malaysian and Philippines authorities," said Retno at the Foreign Affairs Ministry building in Jakarta.
Retno also said that since 2016 as many as 44 Indonesian citizens had been taken hostage by the Abu Sayyaf group.
"Since 2016, 44 Indonesian citizens had been held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf group. But, all has been freed now,” she said.
Retno called on the Indonesian nationals to remain vigilant when taking up jobs with the Malaysian ships.
"We will also intensify our communication with boat owners in Malaysia," said Retno.
It was previously reported that the four Indonesian fishermen were kidnapped and held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf group on January 16, 2020. They were rescued at different times.
(Writer: Tatang Guritno | Editor: Bayu Galih)