13 Oct 2011

Aid workers kidnapped at gunpoint from refugee camp

Two women working for the aid charity Medecins Sans Frontieres at the world’s biggest refugee camp, Dadaab, are kidnapped by gunmen.

Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya near the Somali border (Getty)

The women, who are believed to be Spanish doctors, were taken at gunpoint from a vehicle. Their driver, who was shot several times, has been evacuated from the camp for further medical treatment, Channel 4 News understands.

North Eastern Province police commander Leo Nyongesa told reporters: “Two female aid workers working for Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) were this afternoon kidnapped by suspected al-Shabaab militants in Dadaab refugee camp in Garissa.”

Somali media reports say the pair’s driver was shot as he tried to negotiate with the gunmen.

MSF said a crisis team has been set up to deal with the incident. Dadaab was set up in 1991 to house Somalis fleeing violence in their country. It has since grown to become the world’s biggest refugee camp with more than 400,000 residents.

The kidnappings are the latest to have occurred in Kenya. Last month a British couple, David and Judith Tebbutt, were kidnapped at a beach resort cloe to the Somalian border.

Judith Tebbutt has not been seen since gunmen took her after shooting dead her husband.