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Key Abu Sayyaf Leader Arrested in the Philippines

  • VOA News

Philippine police have arrested a man described by the United States as a "key leader and financier" in the Abu Sayyaf militant group.

Police say they arrested Khair Mundos in a Manila suburb early Wednesday, bringing an end to a manhunt that had lasted for over seven years.

The U.S. had offered a $500,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Mundos, saying he was a threat to U.S. and Filipino citizens.
Khair Mundos
  • Key leader and financier of Abu Sayyaf
  • Arrested in 2004, escaped in 2007
  • Confessed to arranging transfer of funds from al-Qaida to Abu Sayyaf leader Khadafi Janjalani
  • Reaarrested in Manila suburb on June 11, 2014
  • U.S. had offered $500,000 for information leading to his capture

Source: NCTC

Mundos was arrested in May 2004 and confessed to arranging the transfer of funds from al-Qaida to Abu Sayyaf. He escaped from jail in 2007.

Philippine officials say he was detained without incident outside the house of a relative near the Manila airport, where he fled to avoid capture in the south.

Major-General Eduardo Ano, the head of military intelligence, described Mundos' arrest as a "major blow" to Abu Sayyaf.

The organization, considered a terrorist group by the U.S., is believed to be holding several foreign hostages.

The group says it is fighting to establish an Islamic theocracy in the southern Philippines, which is home to several other Islamist militant groups.

Abu Sayyaf was also responsible for the 2004 bombing of a ferry near Manila Bay that killed more than 100 people.

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