Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Turkish troops to go further into Syria, says foreign minister

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Court ruling expected on Gabon's contested election results

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Clinton's Comedy Turn

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Sarkozy's Populist Pivot, Bahamas Leaks, Syria Truce, Rome Olympic Bid (Part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

US Police Shootings: Race relations and the race to the White House (Part 1)

Read more

#TECH 24

Breaking the wall between technology and people

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Rural France: Challenges and opportunities

Read more

REPORTERS

Video: In Burma, ex-political prisoners struggle to return to normal life

Read more

ENCORE!

Xavier Dolan: Wunderkind of Québecquois cinema

Read more

SPECIAL-REPORTS

Jolo, stronghold of Islamist group Abu Sayyaf

Video by Guillaume BONNET , Cyril PAYEN

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-05-11

FRANCE 24's reporters defied a ban on entering the island of Jolo, in the south of the Philippines, where Islamist group Abu Sayyaf has been multiplying abductions of foreigners. As they discovered, the tension there is palpable.

At the end of March, a state of emergency was declared on the island of Jolo, home to a large Muslim population in a country that is mainly Christian. The island is now near boiling point.

The Islamist group Abu Sayyaf, hiding out in the jungle, finances its operations by kidnappings, in particular of foreigners. Until April 1, it was holding three employees of the Red Cross captive and has since freed two. The third employee is still being held hostage. But negotiations between the local government and the Islamist group seem to have come to a dead end.

The state of emergency involves a massive deployment of the Philippine army: 30,000 soldiers are present on the island. The United States are also participating in this fight and have sent several hundred men to the region. Indeed, Abu Sayyaf is strongly suspected of links to al Qaeda. But for the local population, this American assistance is not welcome.

The inhabitants of Jolo island are paying the price. Bombings are a daily affair in this lawless zone where one can count as many weapons as there are residents. It is a place where violence and death roam everywhere.

Date created : 2009-05-08

COMMENT(S)