Gunmen abduct German Red Cross nurse in Somalia

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Mogadishu, May 3 (IANS) A German nurse working for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has been kidnapped by armed men in the Somali capital, the aid organization said on Thursday.

The abduction, on Wednesday evening, took place after gunmen stormed into the ICRC compound in Mogadishu and grabbed the woman, taking her out through a back entrance to evade security guards, the Guardian reported.

The nurse was identified as Sonja Nientiet, who had worked for the ICRC since 2014 in conflict zones, including Syria and Congo, the daily said.

“We are deeply concerned about the safety of our colleague,” said Daniel O’Malley, the ICRC’s deputy head of delegation for Somalia.

“She is a nurse who was working every day to save lives and improve the health of some of Somalia’s most vulnerable people,” he said.

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A police operation was underway, said local officer Major Mohamed Hussein. “We got the report minutes after she was abducted and now we are searching the whole area. We hope we shall find her.”

No group claimed responsibility but in the past foreigners, journalists and aid workers have been kidnapped by armed gangs or al-Shabaab militants and held for ransom, sometimes for years at a time.

–IANS

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