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Kidnapped Italian priest still alive but not well

Italian missionary in the Philippines Fr Giuseppe Pierantoni is alive but is not well, the country's military said on Monday.

Col. Estrellito Romero, deputy chief of the Task Force Giuseppe, the team tasked to recover the kidnapped priest, said based on accounts from their informers, Pierantoni is being moved in and out of at least four coastal towns of Lanao del Sur.

Brig. Gen. Santiago Prejido, commander of the Army's 401st Infantry Brigade based in Lanao del Sur, said Pierantoni or Fr. Beppe has grown weak and has to be carried around by his captors.

"Our emissaries positively noticed him (being) transferred from one place to another," Romero said.

Prejido said the kidnapped priest had been sighted in the towns of Sultan Gumander, Malabang, Kapatagan Dos, and parts of Pualas.

He, however, admitted that they are having difficulty pinpointing the exact location of Fr. Beppe because the kidnappers are very mobile.