Al Qaeda-linked militants in the Philippines have threatened to kill two German hostages unless Germany stops supporting US action against Islamic State militants.

In a message via twitter, the Abu Sayyaf demanded a 5.6 million dollar ransom and an end to German support for the U.S.-led coalition against Islamic State.

The group said it would kill either Stefan Okonek or Henrike Dielen if their demands were not met within 15 days.

Media reports say the man and woman were seized at gunpoint from a yacht between Malaysian Borneo and the southern Philippines.

The Abu Sayyaf  is a small but violent group with links to Al Qaeda.

It has lately focused on kidnap-for-ransom and other criminal activities. Though, it has also proclaimed its allegiance to IS, that has seized large areas of Iraq and Syria.

Despite the threats Germany says it will not change its strategy.

On Thursday troops packed up their first shipment of weapons and military supplies to send to Kurdish fighters battling IS fighters in northern Iraq, although Germany says it has ruled out taking part in air strikes.

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