Aquino: Misuari hiding from one island to another-A A +A
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
MANILA (Updated) -- Fugitive Nur Misuari, leader of a faction of the Moro National Liberation Front that staged last month's Zamboanga siege, has not yet left the country and has been hiding from one island to another in his home province of Sulu, said President Benigno Aquino III.
In a forum with the foreign press, Aquino said that government forces were exerting efforts to arrest Misuari immediately.
"The latest report is he's still in the country, in Sulu, and transferring from island to island. We are still exerting efforts to get him into cast the soonest possible time," he said.
He said government troops have yet to identify exactly where Misuari is.
He also indicated that the MNLF leader was being coddled by his fellow Muslims who were still loyal to him.
"You also ask some loyalists within him. There is that concept of… we have to be careful about treating cultural sensitivities of others who are not presently involved but who might find common cause in protecting a fellow Muslim," Aquino said.
He acknowledged that the government has to find ways on how to arrest Misuari in such a way that the situation in Mindanao would not get worse.
"So you have to craft it in such a way that you’d come up with a solution and not exacerbate the problem," he said.
The President said he has not yet reached a decision if a reward would be offered for anyone who could give information on Misuari's whereabouts.
Meanwhile, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte confirmed Wednesday that Misauri’s wife has sought refuge in Davao. He refused, however, to give any details, saying the wife and children should be “spared from the conflict.”
"I cannot tell you where but nagbakasyon," Duterte told reporters in an interview.
Tarhata, Nur's wife, reportedly asked for help from Duterte who is a close friend of her husband.
Duterte said Tarhata told him that they were being constantly trailed by the military in Zamboanga City since after the siege there, thus they decided to find refuge somewhere else.
The city mayor, in return, gave her the green light and assured their security. "This city (Davao) would be a very nice place to stay especially if you are a peace-loving citizen," he said. (SDR/With ANC of Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)