Tuesday, 16th July 2024

17 US missionaries, kids kidnapped by gangs in Haiti

Sunday, 17th October 2021

17 US missionaries, kids kidnapped by gangs in Haiti
According to media reports, 17 American Christian missionaries and their families, including children, were abducted by gang members in the Haitian capital Port-Au-Prince.

The New York Times, quoting security officials in Port-au-Prince, stated the missions were abducted on Saturday while travelling on a bus.

The report said that the group left an orphanage and drove to the airport to drop off some of its members.

The AFP news agency, citing a security source, said the group is being held by an armed gang that has been engaged for months in theft and theft in the area connecting Port-au-Prince with the neighbouring country Dominican Republic.

The Associated Press said U.S.-based Christian Aid Ministries had sent a message to various religious missions that the abducted group was building an orphanage in Haiti.

"This is a special prayer alert," the one-minute message stated, according to AP. "Pray that the gang members will come to the bot."

The message added that the field director of the mission is operating with the US Embassy and that the field director's family and another unidentified man remained at the mission base while all the others visiting the orphanage were abducted.

A US government spokesman said they were aware of the reports of the abduction.

"The well-being and security of US citizens abroad are one of the top priorities of the State Department," the spokesman said, rejecting further comments.

Haiti is again battling a spike in gang-linked kidnappings that went increased after President Jovenel Moise was fatally shot in his residence on July 7. The situation got even worse after a magnitude 7.2 earthquake shook southwestern Haiti, he died in August, and more than 2,200 people were killed.