Jakarta : A Canadian national has been beheaded in the Philippines by Islamist militant group Abu Sayyaf after a ransom payment deadline passed, the Philippines government confirmed Tuesday.
Robert Hall was one of four people kidnapped by the group last September in the southern Philippines. His execution follows that of fellow Canadian hostage John Ridsdel on April 25 when the militants did not receive the requested ransom.
"We strongly condemn the brutal and senseless murder of the Mr. Robert Hall, a Canadian national, after being held captive by the Abu Sayyaf group in Sulu for the past nine months," the statement from Sonny Coloma, a Presidential spokesperson.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Monday that it was likely Hall had been executed: "It is with deep sadness that I have reason to believe that a Canadian citizen, Robert Hall, held hostage in the Philippines since September 21, 2015, has been killed by his captors," Trudeau said in a statement, adding that officials were working to officially confirm his death.
What is Abu Sayyaf?
"The vicious and brutal actions of the hostage-takers have led to a needless death. Canada holds the terrorist group who took him hostage fully responsible for this cold-blooded and senseless murder," Trudeau said.