Malacañang on Friday condemned the recent killing of a Dutch national by the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).

“We condemn, in the strongest terms, the death of Mr. Ewold Horn, a Dutch national kidnapped and had been held hostage by the Abu Sayyaf Group since 2012,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.

Panelo said Horn was killed during an encounter between government troops and the local terrorist group, and his death was confirmed by the Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom).

“We express our deep condolences to Mr. Horn’s family and loved ones. We vow to pursue his killers to the ends of the earth until they are brought to justice,” he said.

Col. Gerry Besana, Westmincom information officer, said ASG bandits killed Horn, a birdwatcher, who was kidnapped more than seven years ago, in the midst of a firefight in the province of Sulu.

Horn was one of the remaining hostages of the ASG bandits in Sulu. He was kidnapped together with another birdwatcher, Lorenzo Vinciguerra of Switzerland, in Sitio Luuk-Luuk, Barangay Parangan, Panglima Sugala, Tawi-Tawi on Feb. 1, 2012.

They were on a bird watching activity when seized by ASG bandits and were brought to Sulu.

Vinciguerra managed to escape in 2014.