JAKARTA, June 24 (Xinhua) -- Seven Indonesian seamen have been kidnapped by two armed groups in the southern Philippines waters, Indonesia's foreign affairs minister said on Friday.
"We were informed on June 23 that seven of 13 sailors from Charles 001 tugboat and Robby 152 barge had been held hostage in the Sulu Sea," Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi told reporters in Jakarta.
According to her, the kidnappings occurred on June 20 but at different times, 11:30 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. local time, and were carried out by two different armed groups, which she didn't immediately reveal the identities.
Six of the 13 crews on board have been freed, and are on their way back to Indonesia, the minister said.
"We strongly condemn the recurrence of such incident, and can't tolerate the third time," she said.
In April, 14 Indonesian citizens were held hostage in two different occasions by Abu Sayyaf rebels in southern Philippines, 10 of whom were released a month later.
Retno said her office has been intensively contacting with her counterpart in the Philippines, adding that she would also have a meeting with the Coordinating Minister of Politics, Law and Security later in the Friday afternoon.
Last month, the governments of Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines agreed to step security in the waters between the three countries after a series of hijacking and kidnapping cases.