SEMPORNA, Malaysia - Malaysian and Philippine security forces have mounted a hunt for seven Filipino gunmen who snatched two women from the Singamata Reef Resort here.
Neither side has made any sighting of the gunmen or their victims, with the Philippines focusing on intelligence gathering on the possibility that the group had entered a village within the Tawi Tawi chain of islands.
As Malaysia continues the sea, air and ground search at various locations within the east coast Semporna waters, police are checking out the background of some resort workers to piece together possible leads.
The Philippines Armed Forces Sulu Task Force commander Brig-Gen Martin Pinto told The Star: "We have mobilised our naval assets in the Sulu and Tawi Tawi areas and all bases along coastal areas for possible entry," he said, adding that they had yet to get reports that the group might have slipped into the Philippines.
The Philippines Embassy in Kuala Lumpur said the Philippine authorities, especially police maritime units and anti-kidnapping operatives, were coordinating with their Malaysian counterparts in working towards resolving the case as soon as possible.