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Sierra Leonean diplomat kidnapped in Nigeria released

Sierra Leonean diplomat kidnapped in Nigeria released

Nigeria

The Sierra Leonean Deputy High Commissioner kidnapped in Nigeria last Friday has been released on Tuesday unharmed, Nigerian police announced.

Retired Major General Alfred Claude Nelson-Williams was kidnapped on July 1 in Kaduna, some 200 km to the north, where he was returning from a military graduation ceremony outside the city.

“The diplomat has been handed to the Ambassador of Sierra Leone and his family. He is in good health,” the head of the Don Awunah police said.

The circumstances of his release were not disclosed and it is unclear whether a ransom was paid. The police chief simply said that his men located the place where the diplomat was held hostage at 3 p.m. (1400 GMT).

Abductions have become rampant in Nigeria prompting influential people to travel in armoured cars with military or police escort.

As Islamist group Boko Haram is striking in the North, the South also faces kidnappings by unknown criminals targeting wealthy Nigerians and mostly expatriates for ransom.

Two Indians were kidnapped last week while traveling to work in Benue State in central Nigeria.

Last month, seven construction workers including a South African, two Nigerians, three Australians and a New Zealander were kidnapped in Nigeria’s southeast after their vehicle was attacked and driver killed.

They were released a week after and according to Nigerian officials, no ransom was paid for their release.