Relief SCENE:Security
Breaking News
Two Aid Workers Kidnapped in Dadaab
MSF Employees Believed to Be Spanish
10/13/2011
Two aid workers from Medecins Sans Frontieres have been kidnapped at the Dadaab refugee complex in north-east Kenya, the aid agency and police officials said Thursday.

Gunmen attacked a car carrying the two workers, injuring the driver and disappearing with the two workers, MSF said.

The two female aid workers are Spanish.

"Two female aid workers working for MSF were this afternoon kidnapped by suspected al-Shabaab militants in Dadaab refugee camp in Garissa," North Eastern Province police commander Leo Nyongesa told Reuters news agency. "We've mobilised all the officers and alerted those at the border to ensure that no vehicle exits the country to Somalia. The whole border area is now sealed."

A local contractor, who wished to remain anonymous, told Somalia Report the driver was shot when he tried to negotiate with the kidnappers, who took the 4x4 they were in and headed in the direction of the border town, Ammuma.

Al-Shabaab has long been believed to have a presence in Dadaab, where over 400,000 Somali refugees are sheltering from conflict and drought. Security analysts have recently been warning about an increased threat of kidnapping for ransom in the camp, saying aid workers could easily be spirited across the porous border.

The kidnappings follow on from the seizure of British woman Judith Tebbutt and French citizen Marie Dedieu from the coastal Lamu area near Kenya's border with Somalia.