News / Africa

Kidnapped Foreign Aid Workers Rescued in Somalia

Released foreign aid workers from the Norwegian Refugee Council are welcomed by their colleagues upon arriving at the Wilson airport in Nairobi, July 2, 2012.
Released foreign aid workers from the Norwegian Refugee Council are welcomed by their colleagues upon arriving at the Wilson airport in Nairobi, July 2, 2012.
VOA News
Four international aid workers kidnapped in Kenya are now free and headed home, following a dramatic rescue by security forces inside Somalia. The hostages were rescued on Monday during a joint operation by Kenyan and Somali military forces, three days after being captured. A Somali police official said the four were discovered after a gunfight between the captors and security officials about 80 kilometers from the Kenya border. Major Adam Bahdoon Ibraahim said officials got a tip late Sunday that led them to the kidnappers between Dhobley and Buale early Monday. "We traced the kidnappers into a forest on the side of the road at around 4 a.m.," he said. "We exchanged fire, one of them was killed, the rest fled. We found the four hostages tied hands and legs under a tree. Two females and two men. One man from Philippines had a gunshot wound to his thigh, which he said he sustained during the kidnapping." The Dhobley police commander said the aid workers appeared bruised and very tired. They include nationals from Norway, Canada, Pakistan and the Philippines. The aid workers were kidnapped on Friday in the massive Dadaab refugee complex in Kenya. The aid workers' driver, a Kenyan, was killed. Officials with the Norwegian Refugee Council confirmed the release of its workers, saying they are "deeply thankful." The council said the workers were being safely returned home, but did not offer details about their medical condition. Kenyan officials have not said who was behind the kidnappings. They have blamed similar incidents on the Somali-base militant group al-Shabab. Kenya sent military troops into Somalia in October to pursue members of the al-Qaida-allied group. Since then, Kenyan officials have blamed a spate of attacks and kidnappings in al-Shabab. On Sunday, Kenyan police say gunmen attacked two churches in the eastern town of Garissa, killing 17 people and wounding at least 40. There has been no claim of responsibility. Al-Shabab is considered a regional threat and has been fighting to overthrow Somalia's government and impose a strict form of Sharia, or Islamic law.

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Wally Geez from: USA
July 02, 2012 11:29 AM
It is COMPLETELY irresponsible for these "aid" agencies to allow foreigners to work in those hostile environments. It's a miracle these folks weren't killed. The workers are well-intentioned, but completely foolish going there at all.

by: sam from: USA
July 02, 2012 10:51 AM
Why do people still go to this dump and place themselves in harms way? Help people in your own country. These backward savages have no desire to help each other or travel halfway around the world to help you. There are poor, starving people in America and every other i1st world country who would be happy to receive your aid, and would actually benefit for it and return your effort.
In Response

by: Davy from: Nairobi
July 02, 2012 12:08 PM
Reading some of the comments posted above gives me the impression of utter ignorance on the part part of the writers. Do you have an idea that what is happening in one part of the world actually affects you in one way or the other? You feel secure in your "glass houses" and expect peace to walk to your door step? Come on people, the war going in Somalia is directly born out of the American interests and us Kenyan have paid more than our fair share in your name, if you didn't know. Spare us the insults and enjoy your "peace". "Backward Savages" ? My foot!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs