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2 South Africans confirmed kidnapped in Yemen


20:27, May 29, 2013

CAPE TOWN, May 29 (Xinhua) -- Two South Africans were kidnapped by unknown gunmen in Yemen, the government confirmed on Wednesday.

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said that it "can now confirm the kidnapped pair in Yemen are South Africans." "Officials are intervening... to engage all role players," said DIRCO spokesperson Clayson Monyela.

The couple, whose names are not given, were kidnapped in Yemen's central province of Taiz on Monday by unknown gunmen in front of a hotel in the town of Ta'izz, 250 km south of the capital Sanaa.

The pair involved in the development of the hotel were reported in a dispute between developers and the landlord shortly before the abduction.

The DIRCO is sending a delegation, led by the country's ambassador to Saudi Arabia, to Yemen on Wednesday to secure the release of the couple.

It is the latest kidnap involving foreigners in Yemen, where Al- Qaida militants or tribesmen often kidnap foreigners for ransoms. Most kidnapped foreigners are released unharmed after ransoms are paid.

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