• Duterte apologized to Trudeau for the death of John Ridsdel in the hands of the Abu Sayyaf group
  • The incoming president vowed to bring Ridsdel’s killers to justice
  • Trudeau called Ridsdel’s death “an act of cold-blooded murder”

Presumptive President Rodrigo Duterte apologized to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for the death of a Canadian national by the hands of the Abu Sayyaf Group.

Trudeau called on Tuesday, May 24, to extend his best wishes to Duterte for his election victory.

Duterte told reporters during a late night press conference in Davao City that he apologized to the Canadian leader over the beheading of Canadian John Ridsdel, a former mining executive, last month.

Quoting himself, Duterte said: “I said ‘Mr. Prime Minister, please accept my apologies for the incident. We will try our very best and see to it that nothing of this sort will happen again, and you can rest assured that when the time comes, we will be able to apprehend the criminals and exact justice.”

John Ridsdel was one of the four people abducted by the Abu Sayyaf in Samal Island in September last year. He was beheaded last April 25 after the Canadian government did not agree to pay the ransom demanded by the terror group.

The Islamic extremist group demanded P300 million for Ridsdel and his three companions’ – a fellow Canadian, a Norwegian and a Filipina – freedom.

Inquirer said according to its source, the Abu Sayyaf turned down the P20 million raised for Ridsdel’s release.

Trudeau said Ridsdel’s death was an “act of cold-blooded murder” and that “responsibility rests with the terrorist group who took him hostage.”

The Abu Sayyaf set June 13 as deadline for paying the ransom they demanded. The group warned it will execute one of the hostages if their demand is not met.