16 May 2019

Somalia: Abductors Demand U.S.$1.5 Million Ransom for Cuban Doctors

Photo: Nairobi News
Dr Landy Rodriguez Hernandez handles a patient in a Mandera hospital as Dr Assel Herrera Correa (left) looks away.

Suspected Al Shabaab militants who abducted two Cuban doctors in Mandera are now demanding Ksh.150 million [$1.5 milion] in ransom.

The ransom demand was communicated through community elders who went to a remote place between the towns of Buale and El-Ade in Jubaland region of Somalia, where general practitioner Herera Corea and surgeon Landy Rodriguez are said to have been seen alive.

After days of negotiations, community elders from Mandera and Bulahawo in Somalia who traveled deep into the horn of Africa nation confirmed that the two are alive and offering treatment to the community in a restricted environment.

Their abductors are demanding a 1.5 million U.S. dollars (Ksh.150 million) ransom to release the doctors abducted on their way to work from home in Mandera County on April 12, 2018.

Sources privy to the North-Eastern provincial administration command, however, says authorities have sent back the elders seeking to further negotiate the ransom.

Intelligence sources however intimate that the duo might have been abducted by bandits who handed them over to suspected the Al Shabaab militants who subsequently sought the ransom from the group of elders allegedly through proxies.

Following the abduction, Cuban doctors posted in Wajir, Garissa and Tana River were recalled and reassigned other counties.

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