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For freedom, Filipino pays ransom

December 29, 2009

Brave Abu Sayyaf rebels wear ammo belts (and ski masks)

Again, Islam and the Koran permit imposing ransoms for jihad.  Thankfully, this Filipino educator escaped a jihadist organization with his life.  But not all of Abu Sayyaf’s victims have been so fortunate this month.  This story arrived from the Philippine Inquirer on Christmas Day:

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines–It is a happy Christmas for the family of a kidnapped Basilan university official after all.

After spending 14 days in the hands of his captors, Dr. Orlando Fajardo was finally freed, rejoining his family a few hours before Christmas.

Basilan Vice Governor Al Rasheed Sakalahul said Fajardo, vice president of Basilan State College, was set free between Tipo-tipo and Tuburan towns around 9:30 p.m. Christmas eve Thursday.

Sakalahul admitted that the Fajardo family shelled out P100,000 to the kidnappers but refused to call it ransom. He said it was “board and lodging fee.”

The kidnappers initially demanded P20 million in ransom but lowered it to P3.5 million.

“No ransom was paid except for the P100,000, which was given by installment,” Sakalahul said.

Suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits snatched Fajardo inside his canteen, which is just across the university compound in Isabela City.

Meanwhile, the fate of Chinese nationals Oscar Lu Tan and Michael Tan, who were kidnapped in November, remained uncertain.

Certainly the euphemism for ransom used here, “board and lodging fee,” will catch on with Western media.  And they can call the jizya an “exemption fee.”  (That is, exemption from death.)

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