A group of armed individuals has kidnapped in Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, a bus with at least 50 passengers on board and are demanding a reward of $ 500,000, according to reports from press agencies.
The events occurred this Wednesday, when the captured vehicle was covering an interprovincial route.
Some of the passengers were stripped of their belongings and later released, while others remain hostages, said the president of the Haitian Owners and Drivers Association, Mehu Changeux.
The kidnapping of the priest
The last known impact kidnapping case was that of Father Jean-Nicaisse Milien.
The Haitian priest and nine other people had just been kidnapped outside Port-au-Prince in early April. It was approximately seven in the morning and they were heading to the celebration of the inauguration of a new parish priest in a church in the area when between 15 and 20 bandits with heavy weapons surrounded their vehicle.
“Go there! Go there! ”Ordered the individuals.
They belonged to the 400 Mawozo gang, the same group that kidnapped 17 missionaries on October 16 when they were on their way to an orphanage. That group, which includes five minors, including an eight-month-old baby, is still in captivity, amid death threats. The gang wants to collect a ransom.
The kidnapping of the 17 missionaries
A group of up to 17 Christian missionaries from the United States and their families were kidnapped in Port-au-Prince while leaving an orphanage.
The group, which included children, was kidnapped by a criminal gang when they were on a bus heading from the orphanage to the airport.
Despite the deteriorating security situation
in Haiti, the abduction of such a large group of Americans surprised local authorities, the newspaper said.
Kidnappings became common in Haiti since the beginning of 2020, they occur indiscriminately and affect people of any social nature, since they became a source of funding for the armed gangs that control numerous neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince and other areas of the country.
As denounced this month by the Center for the Analysis of Human Rights Research (CARDH), Haiti registered an “exponential” increase in kidnappings in the last two months, with 117 in September, a figure that is 60 percent more than in August.
A total of 17 million dollars, one million for each of those kidnapped, is what the Haitian gang ‘400 Mawozo’ demands for their rescue, responsible for the kidnapping of a group of missionaries, which occurred on October 16. This was revealed by the newspaper ‘The Wall Street Journal’, which quotes the Minister of Justice of Haiti, Liszt Quitel.
The official added that both the Haitian Police and the FBI are advising the Ohio-based religious organization Christian Aid Ministries, to which the victims belong.
Quitel explained that the criminals called the personnel of that movement in Haiti for the first time at 4:53 pm last Saturday, indicating their ransom demands.
Since then there have been several communications that could last for weeks, he said.
Since the beginning of this year, 628 kidnappings have been reported in the country, including 29 foreigners of three nationalities, although the CARDH indicates that this number will increase as other countries provide data on their citizens. The gangs granted a brief truce in the two-week kidnappings between the assassination of President Jovenel Moise, perpetrated on July 7, and his burial, carried out on the 23rd of the same month.