The Haitian criminal group that kidnapped a group of American and Canadian missionaries is asking for $ 17 million to release them. informs Wall Street Journal citing a Haitian spokesman.
Justice Minister List Quitel said the FBI and Haitian police are in contact with the kidnappers and are seeking the release of missionaries abducted over the weekend outside the capital of Port-au-Prince by the 400 Mawozo gang.
Negotiations could take several weeks, according to Kvitel. 16 Americans and 1 Canadian have been kidnapped, including six women and five children.
American missionaries kidnapped just days after US officials visited Haiti. They pledged to provide assistance to local police and, in particular, to allocate an additional $ 15 million to fight organized crime on the island.
Kidnappings have become commonplace in Haiti recently, with at least 628 incidents in the first nine months of 2021 alone, according to a report by the Haitian Nonprofit Center for Human Rights Analysis and Research (CARDH).
Haiti suffers from high crime rates amid political crisis and social upheaval. On July 7, the country’s president, Jovenel Moise, was shot dead at his residence. The attackers also killed his wife. The authorities later announced that foreigners were involved in the crime: 26 immigrants from Colombia and two Americans. And the organizer of the attack on the presidential residence was the 63-year-old doctor Christian Emmanuel Sanon, who lived in Florida.