Yemen: three Filipino sailors kidnapped


A Yemeni man stands on a rock on February 1, 2012 overlooking a village in Wadi Ahjar, some 50 kms northwest of Sanaa.


Muhammed Huwais

Three Filipino sailors were kidnapped in Yemen by militants pushing for the release of a prisoner, the BBC reported.

The sailors were taken "as they were travelling to a port in Mahra." 

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The Associated Press wrote that they were taken by tribesmen from the Bani Gabr tribe.

Meanwhile, a senior Yemeni intelligence officer was picked up in Hadramawt province, and the Associated Press said al-Qaeda militants were blamed. According to BBC, a woman from Switzerland was kidnapped from Yemen's western coast last week. "More than 200 foreigners have been seized in the country over the past 15 years; most have been freed unharmed."

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The Filipino Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said in a text to GMA News Network: "Our cisis [sic] management [team] in Sanaa, Yemen is getting in touch with Yemen authorities (Ministry of Foreign affairs, Ministry of Interior and Maritime Security) Philippine honorary consul in Marib, their employer, and Filipino leaders to verify the report and ascertain their identities."