Wednesday, March 18, 2009

UN Aid Workers Freed in Somalia

Good news from Somalia: four UN employees of the World Food Program were released after being kidnapped Monday. Via AFP:
MOGADISHU (AFP) — Three foreign aid workers and a Somali employed by the United Nations were freed Monday, hours after being kidnapped by local militiamen in southern Somalia, elders and UN staff said.

The four were snatched from their car by armed men on their way to an airstrip in Wajid, a food aid hub 340 kilometres (210 miles) south of the capital Mogadishu, early in the morning.

"Efforts to secure their release were conducted by local elders and officials from the Shebab movement. These efforts have finally succeeded and the hostages are free," a local UN employee said on condition of anonymity.

Thank God for this swift and successful resolution to the abduction. Please continue to pray for the many others still held captive in Somalia, including Danka Panchova and her colleagues from Action Against Hunger, who were kidnapped last November; journalists Amanda Lindhout and Nigel Brennan, who were abducted in August 2008; Murray Watson and Patrick Amukhuma, who were kidnapped in April 2008; and for the hundreds of crewmembers of ships hijacked by Somali pirates.

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