The Jakarta Post
The family of Peter Tonsen Barahama, one of the Indonesian sailors held hostage by Abu Sayyaf militants in the Philippines, have expressed their gratitude for the release of their loved one.
Peter’s brother, identified only as Sam, said he was ready to fly to Jakarta to bring him back home. Peter is the captain of the tugboat Brahma 12. He was released yesterday after he and nine other Brahma 12 crew members had been held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf group for a month.
“Peter’s company has sent us tickets to travel to Jakarta to meet our brother,” Sam said as quoted by kompas.com in Manado, North Sulawesi, on Monday.
Sam and his parents are scheduled to depart from Tahuna, Sangihe to Manado, on Tuesday, before they continue to fly to Jakarta. Sam said his family, especially his parents, could not wait any longer to meet with Peter.
“We are grateful to God that our brother could finally be rescued. Thank you to all parties that have striven to release him,” said Sam.
As reported earlier, 10 Brahma 12 crew members arrived in Jakarta on Sunday evening after they were released by the Abu Sayyaf militant group on the same day. Their release ended speculation on the condition of the 10 Indonesian nationals. Currently, four Indonesian crew members from a different ship are still being by Abu Sayyaf.
One of the negotiators participating in the operation to release the 10 Indonesian sailors likened the hostage-takers to a naughty family member.
“There’s a naughty child in the family. So, how we can communicate with this child?” said Eddy Mulya, a negotiation team member, who is also the coordinator of the political affairs division at the Indonesian Embassy in Manila. He was speaking to journalists at Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in East Jakarta on Sunday evening.
Eddy said the government managed to release the 10 Indonesian citizens thanks to negotiations and without any ransom payment.
“It fully resulted from negotiations. It was my friend Pak Baidowi and his friends who handled the negotiation process. We just followed it up,” he said.
In a press statement released to the media on Sunday it was said the hostages were released thanks to work conducted by the Surya Paloh Humanitarian Team, which synergized with education network the Sukma Foundation, also popularly known as the Sukma Bangsa School, in Aceh, led by Ahmad Baidowi.
The 10 Indonesian sailors were taken to the Gatot Subroto Central Army Hospital (RSPAD) in Central Jakarta for a medical check-up shortly after they arrived at Halim Perdanakusuma at 11.30 p.m. Sunday. (ebf)
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