Robert Hall, a Canadian hostage of the al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf, was beheaded after a ransom demand deadline passed, the Philippines government said Tuesday.
Hall, 66, was the second Canadian executed by Abu Sayyaf. John Ridsdel was killed April 25 when militants did not receive ransom, reported CNN
. The two were among a group of four people kidnapped by the Islamist militant group last September.
"We strongly condemn the brutal and senseless murder of Mr. Robert Hall, a Canadian national, after being held captive by the Abu Sayyaf group in Sulu for the past nine months," Sonny Coloma, a Philippines presidential spokesman, said in a statement, per CNN.
The death brought condemnation from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who also praised the Hall family for their "strength of character in their resilience," according to the CBC News
"We are more committed than ever to working with the government of the Philippines and international partners to pursue those responsible for these heinous acts and bring them to justice, however long it takes," Trudeau said.
Maj. Filemon Tan Jr., a spokesman of Western Mindanao Command, told CNN Philippines, per the Philippine Star
, that three sources said that Hall was killed around 3:15 p.m. on Monday, a few minutes after the ransom deadline lapsed.
The Star said Abu Sayyaf demanded a ransom of 300 million Philippine pesos, or roughly $6.48 million, for each of the four captives, who also included Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad and Filipina Marites Flor. They were taken from the Holiday Oceanview Samal Resort.
Hall's family released a statement Tuesday, saying that it agreed with the government's stance on not paying ransom, reported the CTV News
"Please know that the efforts taken to free Robert were vast and exhaustive," Hall's family said, noted CTV News. "Every option was considered, every contact was sought. Ultimately, our efforts, and those of the various governmental agencies involved, weren't enough.
"However; our family, even in our darkest hour, agrees wholeheartedly with Canada's policy of not paying ransom to those who would seek to undermine the fundamental values with which my father lived his life."
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