Hostage killed, 2 rescued in Zamboanga del Norte encounter

Jewel Reyes, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 03 2017 05:12 PM

SIOCON - One hostage was killed while two others were rescued in an encounter between government forces and unidentified armed men in Zamboanga del Norte Friday, authorities said.

The victim, 40-year-old Ronnie Tanggupan, was one of three men abducted by at least 20 armed assailants in Barangay Dionisio Riconalla here Friday night, police said. 

The two other hostages, Carlo Cariño, 24, and Marjun Alano, 27, were recovered safely.

The armed men used the hostages as shields against government troops in pursuit after they attacked the detachment of the Philippine Army's 42nd Infantry Battalion in Sirawai town. 

Government troops pursued the abductors in a thick forest area in Siocon, said Senior Superintendent Edwin Wagan, Zamboanga del Norte Police Director.

After the abduction, about 40 families in three sitios were evacuated to a chapel and school at Barangay Dionisio Riconalla.

There were no casualties on the government side, while it has yet to be determined if any of the armed men sustained injuries.