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Kidnapped woman rescued from Philippines
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2013-12-20 04:19 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Chang An-wei, the Taiwanese woman abducted from a holiday resort in Malaysia by rebels from the Philippines 35 days ago, has been freed by Filipino marines, reports said Friday.

The Abu Sayyaf group which reportedly attacked the resort, in the eastern state of Sabah on the island of Borneo, killed her husband during the attack and was believed to be keeping her on a small island in the nearby Southern Philippines.

According to media reports, the marines found her in the town of Maimbung in the province of Sulu and rescued her. It was not known yet what her physical condition was, but she was undergoing medical tests at a marine base, reports said.

Her rescue was reportedly confirmed by Taiwanese diplomatic staff in Malaysia and by police spokespersons in the Philippines.

Chang’s brother, Chang Ta-kung, reportedly visited Manila recently in an effort related to her rescue.

Earlier Friday, Kuomintang lawmaker Alex Tsai said on his Facebook page that he had received a picture showing Chang washing her clothes, proving she was still alive. However, because of the constant changes in location and the pressure of her fate, her mental situation was not that good, Tsai wrote.

The lawmaker added that the negotiations for her release were at a delicate stage. He earlier denied playing the part of go-between between the kidnappers and her relatives.

The abductors stormed the Pom Pom Island Resort on November 15, shot Taiwanese tourist Hsu Li-ming dead and disappeared with Chang, his wife, while apparently leaving other guests in the wooden rooms built on stilts above the water unharmed.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs called on the authorities in Malaysia and the Philippines to help out with the case. Relatives of Hsu and Chang traveled to the scene, but asked the media not to reveal details because it might endanger the talks aimed at securing her release.

Chang also reportedly suffered from a congenital disorder, making it necessary for her to receive medication from her family, reports said.

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