ZAMBOANGA CITY -- US troops in Mindanao have started to use bottled water as another tool in their anti-terror campaign aimed at stamping out the Abu Sayyaf.
The bottled water even came with an official endorser: US Charge d’Affaires Paul Jones.
At a press conference held at the Southern Command here on Tuesday, US Embassy personnel and American military officials distributed samples of the new anti-terror instrument, with accessories in the forms of leaflets bearing profiles of wanted terrorists and corresponding rewards for their capture.
The label on the product, which comes in 12 oz plastic bottles, bears photos of the most-wanted Abu Sayyaf leaders -- Isnilon Hapilon, Khadaffy Janjalani, and Jainal Antel Sali Jr., alias Abu Sulaiman -- with corresponding rewards of up to 5 million dollars for their capture.
Also printed on the label were the words “Wanted for murder, extortion, and kidnapping” and hotline numbers that informants could use to contact the appropriate agencies.
“It looks promising but I guess it would only be effective if a person is thirsty,” said Ricardo Cabaron, Western Mindanao State prosecutor.
Colonel Domingo Tutaan Jr., Southcom’s chief of staff, said the distribution of the bottled water in areas where US troops had been conducting civic action was aimed at increasing the people’s vigilance against terrorism.