Taiwan has been seeking assistance from the Philippines in securing the release of a Taiwanese woman who was kidnapped in Malaysia earlier this month and taken to the Philippines, Deputy Minister of Justice Chen Ming-tang (陳明堂) said yesterday.
“We have been in contact with the Philippines concerning the rescue of the kidnapped Taiwanese woman in line with a bilateral legal assistance agreement,” Chen said on the sidelines of a hearing of the Legislative Yuan’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee.
The woman, identified as Chang An-wei (張安薇), is believed to have been taken to an outlying Philippine island after being abducted on Nov. 15 from a resort in the Malaysian state of Sabah.
Chen said that as far as he knew, Chang was alive and unharmed.
While the Ministry of Justice has been making preparations to help rescue the 58-year-old, Chen said, the case is currently being handled by the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Chang was kidnapped while vacationing on Sabah’s Pom Pom Island in an armed attack that left her 57-year-old male companion Hsu Li-min (許立民) dead.
Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yuan (李鴻源) said last week that Chang was taken to the Philippines unharmed by her abductors.
He said Taiwan has been working with Malaysian and Philippine authorities to secure Chang’s safe return.