The 32-day ordeal of Fr. Michael Sinnott under the custody of his kidnappers in southern Philippines ended Thursday with the release of the Irish priest at around 4:30 a.m. There was no ransom paid according to negotiators of the kidnapping incident
Irish Priest Michael Sinnott has been freed by his captors and flown to Manila Thursday morning after undergoing medical check up in a local clinic.
Sinnott was kidnapped by rebels in Mindanao Southern Philippines last October 11 in Basilan City. His captors believed to be members of a rebel group operating in Mindanao turned over the Irish priest to the Task Force formed by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), according to Mohagher Igbal, chief negotiator for the Muslim rebel group.
“Sinnott has just been freed. We turned him over to the government around 4:30 a.m. at Sangali village in Zamboanga City,” Iqbal told the Philippine Daily Inquirer by phone.
Asked about the identities of those behind the kidnapping, Iqbal said: “I cannot give you exact details because it's part of the deal we made with them
Igbal said there was no ransom paid to the kidnappers although there was a reported demand of $2 million for his safe release.
The 78 years old missionary spent much of his life helping the poor in the Philippines.
Sinnott who has a history of heart ailment was handed over to a local clinic and later was later flown to Manila for an audience with President Gloria Arroyo in Malacanang Palace.