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Phillipine Troops Kill 1 and Save 1 US Hostage.

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Special Report: Burnhams


Gracia freed; Martin killed


SANFORD, Florida (June 7, 2002): NTM has received the report of Philippine military action resulting in the death of Martin Burnham and the release of his wife, Gracia. She is reported to have been wounded and is in a medical facility in Zamboanga. Filipina nurse Deborah Yap is also reported killed


Philippine President Arroyo along with the US Ambassador has confirmed these reports with the families.


Our hearts are heavy over the loss of Martin and Deborah. We are grateful for Gracia's survival and we ache for her, their children and the rest of the families.


The NTM crisis team in Manila has received confirmation of this information from the US Embassy, but many of the details are unavailable at this time.


We will continue to issue updates as information becomes available.


We know your hearts are also saddened by this report and we ask that you be in prayer for Gracia, the children, the rest of the families and for the family of Deborah Yap.

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Martin Burnham executed by Abu Sayyaf, say military official


06/07 5:23:24 PM


ZAMBOANGA (AFP) - US hostage Martin Burnham was murdered by Abu Sayyaf guerrillas during a surprise military rescue attempt in the southern Philippines on Friday, the army commander on the ground told AFP.


Burnham and Filipina nurse Ediborah Yap were killed and Burnham's wife Gracia was wounded but freed in the raid near the town of Siraway, according to officials.


Kansas native Martin Burnham, 42, "was executed by the Abu Sayyaf rebels" when they realized that a rescue attempt was underway, Army Scout Rangers Colonel Renato Padua said.


Gracia Burnham was "grazed by a bullet," he said without elaborating.


There was no mention of how Yap was killed.


Four Abu Sayyaf gunmen were killed and seven soldiers were wounded in the firefight, which continued in the mountainous area into late afternoon, Padua added by telephone.


"This is a close-quarter battle," he said. "No American troops are involved here."


Over the past four months, 1,000 US military advisers have been training Filipino troops going after the Abu Sayyaf, a band of Muslim guerrillas with reputed links to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

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No facts yet on rescue attempt that led to hostages' death, says Golez


06/07 5:33:18 PM


There are no facts yet on the tragic rescue that led to the death of two hostages at the hands of the Abu Sayyaf, said Malacañang Palace.


National Security Adviser to the President Roilo Golez told ANC that they have to gather the facts first about the the encounter between the bandits holding the hostages and the military before anyone starts blaming anyone. He added that there is no official number of casualties in the encounter to begin with.


American hostage Martin Burnham as well as Filipino nurse Ediborah Yap were killed in the rescue attempt. However, Martin's wife, a wounded Gracia Burnham, was rescued by the soldiers.


Golez said these events have been a trial for the nation and the military and that "we should all rally behind our soldiers who are doing their best".


He reiterated the statement made by Pres. Gloria Arroyo that she was saddened by the death of Martin Burnham and Ediborah Yap.


With regards to the Balikatan 02-1 training exercise between the US and the Philippines, Golez said the exercises will continue as this was not connected at all to the rescue of the Burnhams and Yap and its principal purpose was to advance the military capability to fight terrorism.

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The operation carried out against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Zamboanga del Norte this afternoon was planned by government forces with the aim of rescuing and destroying the terrorists, acting Armed Forces spokesperson Lt. Gen. Narciso Abaya said.


However, only Gracia Burnham was recovered by the military as her husband, Martin, and another hostage, Filipino nurse Ebidorah Yap, were killed in the encounter in Siraway town.


Echoing the statement of Armed Forces chief Gen. Roy Cimatu, Abaya vowed to pursue the bandits "wherever they will be."


Lt .Gen. Abaya told reporters that prior to the operation, they have received reports that the kidnappers and their hostages had transferred to Zamboanga del Norte between the areas of Sibuco and Siraway.


"We planned for the operation," Abaya said.


"Now that a victim had been recovered, we will continue with the second mission of destroying the Abu Sayyaf," he added.

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Guest Wilt

thats about....10-15 minutes from here...interesting

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