MANILA, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Philippine security forces have recovered the decomposed bodies of seven missing loggers adducted by Abu Sayyaf militants in the southern Philippine island of Basilan, Philippine authorities said on Monday.
Basilan Provincial Police Director Nixon Muskan said a combined police and military team found the decapitated bodies of the seven hostages on Sunday in the remote Switch Yakal village in Lantawan town.
The Abu Sayyaf extremist group abducted the seven loggers on July 20 in the hinterland of Mahayahay village in Maluso town, an adjacent town of Lantawan.
Muskan said the decomposing bodies of the victims were identified through their clothes.
Abu Sayyaf was set up in the early 1990s with money from al-Qaida group. It is one of the extremist groups in the Philippines that pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group, notorious for kidnapping for ransom, bombings and robberies in the southern Philippines.
The Abu Sayyaf bandits have hideouts in the remote impoverished provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.