Swede Reported Kidnapped in Yemen
According to a local official, tribesman have kidnapped a Swedish engineer and his driver working at a cement plant in southern Yemen. The Associated Press reports that Saleh al-Shamsi, the deputy governor of the violence-plagued Abyan province said the Swede was abducted at gunpoint shortly after he left the plant in Batis Thursday afternoon.
Al-Shamsi identified the kidnappers as local tribesmen demanding the release of one of their members jailed in the capital. He said negotiations are under way to secure the release of the engineer and the driver.
Kidnappings are frequent in Yemen and are usually carried out by disgruntled tribesmen hoping to win concessions from the government. In most of those cases, the captives are freed unharmed.
In the past few years, however, al-Qaida has begun kidnapping foreigners as well, sometimes with lethal results.