Archive for Saturday, March 10, 2007

Tour group spotted with unknown kidnappers

March 10, 2007


— A European tour group that disappeared last week near the disputed border of Ethiopia and Eritrea appeared to be "safe and secure" but was in the hands of unknown kidnappers, Ethiopia's foreign minister said Friday.

The group - five employees of the British Embassy in Addis Ababa or their relatives - was abducted along with 13 Ethiopian drivers or translators March 1 in Afar, a remote border area with ancient salt mines and a spectacular volcanic landscape.

Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin said tribal elders had reported the group was in Afar.

The area is rife with bandits and draws few tourists - and those who go must have armed guides.

Four of the Europeans are believed to be British citizens, including one of Italian origin; the other is French. Five of the Ethiopians are believed to have escaped or been released.

Police in Afar say their investigations show the group was kidnapped by dozens of armed men and taken into Eritrea.


Ragingbear 10 years, 10 months ago

Ok. Am I the only one that is completely baffled while somebody would be in a tour group in Ethiopia? "Hey hun, let's pack up everything, grab the kids and go on a tour. How does Ethiopia sound to you?"

Most likely they were a relief group, or a group being given a show to solicit funding or some such. I really doubt if these people were tourist in any traditional sense of the word.

This is sad, and hopefully they will release them soon.

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