– 14 FOREIGNERS ABDUCTED BY ISLAMISTS IN THE SUB SAHARA
An Islamic radical group Ansaru, believed to be an offshoot of the Nigerian Boko Haram, said, on Thursday 02/19/2013, it kidnapped seven foreign workers in a raid that saw a security guard killed, in Jamaare, Bauchi State, Northern Nigeria. Italian, British, Greek and Lebanese workers are thought to be among those being held after the attack. They were working on a construction project when the militants attacked on Sunday, reports say.Ansaru, an Islamist group, emerged in June 2012 and recently carried out a raid in which it kidnapped a French national. The group announced it was behind Sunday’s kidnappings in an email sent to journalists, saying it had “the custody of seven persons, which include Lebanese and their European counterparts” working with construction firm Setraco.
The raid was preceded by an attack on the local police station, when two vehicles were blown up, in the town of Jama’are, some 125 miles (200km) north of the state capital, Bauchi.
Few hours later other kidnappers have taken seven French tourists seized in Cameroon, across the border into neighbouring Nigeria, the Cameroon government said. A Western diplomat in the region told AFP that six armed kidnappers on three motorbikes had abducted a couple, their four children and an uncle.
French President Francois HolLande had said that seven French nationals, four adults and three children from the same family, had been kidnapped in Cameroon by an organisation known to French authorities.
They were seized at Sabongari, seven kilometres from the northern village of Dabanga near the Nigerian border, the foreign ministry said. Asked whether the kidnapping could be a reprisal for France’s military offensive against al-Qaeda-linked groups in northern Mali, HolLande spoke of Nigeria’s Boko Haram group.
A Cameroonian security source also told AFP: “We have strong suspicions regarding the Islamist sect Boko Haram,” which is blamed for killing hundreds of people in an insurgency in northern Nigeria since 2009.
As French troops are fighting Islamists in Northern Mali the MAGHREB al-Qaeda network in the Sub Sahara is striking back of foreign interests and foreigners wherever they can.
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