Asia

Philippines: 2 Malaysians rescued from Abu Sayyaf militants

This photo provided by the Command Public Information Office, Western Mindanao Command, Malaysian hostages Tayudin Anjut, left, and Abdurahim Bin Sumas ride a boat after being rescued by marines in Sulu province, southern Philippines on Thursday March 23, 2017. Two Malaysian sailors held captive for eight months by Muslim militants were rescued Thursday in the southern Philippines, military officials said. (Command Public Information Office, Western Mindanao Command via AP)

This photo provided by the Command Public Information Office, Western Mindanao Command, Malaysian hostages Tayudin Anjut, left, and Abdurahim Bin Sumas ride a boat after being rescued by marines in Sulu province, southern Philippines on Thursday March 23, 2017. Two Malaysian sailors held captive for eight months by Muslim militants were rescued Thursday in the southern Philippines, military officials said. (Command Public Information Office, Western Mindanao Command via AP)  (The Associated Press)

The Philippine military say they have rescued two Malaysian sailors held captive for eight months by Muslim militants.

Major Gen. Carlito G. Galvez, Jr., a regional military commander, said the Malaysians were weak when rescued by marines from Abu Sayyaf militants early Thursday in waters near Sulu province's Pata Island.

They were taken to a military hospital for a medical check-up.

Tayudin Anjut and Abdurahim Bin Sumas were among five Malaysian tugboat crewmen kidnapped in July in waters off Malaysia's Sabah state near the southern Philippines.

The Abu Sayyaf militants survive mostly on ransom kidnappings, extortion and other acts of banditry, targeting slow-moving tugboats in the busy sea bordering the southern Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia.