In Haiti, missionaries who had been held hostage by a criminal gang for two months crawled for hours in the bushes and navigated with the help of the stars.
In Haiti the abducted missionaries and their families were released last week. The Haitian 400 Mawozo gang abducted 17 missionaries last October. Of those abducted, 16 were U.S. citizens and one was a Canadian citizen. There were five children among them.
Five hostages had been released earlier, but the remaining 12 managed to escape from their abductors on their own.
About it said the first time abducted broadcasting organization Christian Aid Ministries at its press conference on Monday. The British Broadcasting Corporation, for example, has previously reported on the matter BBC.
The gang had abducted missionaries as they were returning by bus from their visit to a local orphanage in the city of Ganthier.
The gang demanded a ransom from them, which was originally $ 1 million (€ 887,000) per person – a total of about $ 15 million.
Authorities have said they have been in talks with the gang during the abduction period. Indeed, two abductees were released in November and three in early December.
After being the remaining 12 hostages, who had been abducted for about two months, came up with a way to open the locked door of their storage facility. At night they left.
Among them were five adult men and three adult women, a ten-month-old baby and children aged 3, 14, and 15.
They walked the gang area for several hours in dense bush toward the mountain they had previously seen and navigated based on the stars.
The baby was protected by a blanket, and everyone kept quiet during the getaway — even the children.
The remaining 12 hostages found a way to open the blocked door to their locker. At night they left.
Early in the morning they met a man from whom they could borrow a telephone. The group reported to the authorities. Shortly afterwards, they were picked up in the United States on a Florida Coast Guard flight.
“We praise God that these people have received care,” a Christian Aid Ministries spokesman said at the news conference, showing a picture of the hostage baby after his release.
The hostages had received food and water from their kidnappers, as well as infant formula for the baby. However, the water in which the hostages washed was not clean, so the mosquito bites of some of the prisoners became inflamed.
However, the people released in the Christian Aid Ministries images look prosperous and relieved.
Haiti president Jovenel Moïse was assassinated in July. The political vacuum has deepened the country’s problems.
The Washington Post reported earlier in December that 460 abductions have come to the attention of Haitian police this year. According to the UN, the figure is about double that of 2020.
Haitians have protested against abductions and chaos. An estimated 20,000 people have fled their homes due to gangs, crime and violence.
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