Authorities halt rescue operations for Yusoph

Posted at 07/06/10 12:55 PM

LANAO DEL SUR, Philippines - Rescue operations for the kidnapped son of Comelec Commissioner Elias Yusoph have been halted as authorities remain clueless on the exact location of the kidnappers' lair.

Senior Superintendent Paniares Adap, Lanao del Sur police provincial office, said intelligence teams have been deployed to monitor several areas, where the kidnappers could be keeping Nuraldin Yusoph.

Adap said they also yet to hear from the Council of Elders tapped by the local crisis management committee to negotiate with the kidnappers.

It has been 16 days since armed men snatched Yusoph outside a mosque in Marawi City.

The military earlier said that Yusoph has been handed over by his original kidnappers to a bandit group operating in Lanao provinces.

The kidnappers had initially asked for the nullification of election results in the towns of Malabang, Pitong Taraka, and Masiu in Lanao del Sur.

Last week, authorities said that the kidnappers have contacted the family of Yusoph and issued a ransom demand.

Authorities have refused to confirm reports that the kidnappers are asking P25 million for Yusoph's release. -- Report from Trinidad Velasco, ABS-CBN Northern Mindanao