Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Abu Sayyaf Militants Receive New Funds

Abu Sayyaf militants received funds from an unidentified donor after posting an Internet video of the group's founders appealing for financial support, the Philippines' main intelligence agency said. The al-Qaeda-linked group may use the money to finance attacks, and the discovery led intelligence officials to recommend maintaining a high-level alert for October in the southern Mindanao region, said the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency. The Abu Sayyaf and at least three other militant groups have waged a bloody rebellion for years in the area. The information on the new funds was contained in a NICA report, portions of which were viewed Sunday by reporters. "There was a report of new money received by the ASG (Abu Sayyaf group) financial network," said the document sent to the National Security Council, which advises President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on security concerns. "The money arrived after the ASG group uploaded videos on the Internet." It was not clear from the NICA report how much money was received, when it arrived, or who sent it. In the past, supporters in the Middle East have been known to send money to the Abu Sayyaf.