At Least 16 American Missionaries, Including 5 Children, Kidnapped In Haiti After Visiting Orphanage

At Least 16 American Missionaries, Including 5 Children, Kidnapped In Haiti After Visiting Orphanage

At least 16 American Missionaries, five of whom are children, were reportedly kidnapped at a Haitian airport while they were on their way home after visiting an orphanage, ABC News reports.

Officials said a Haitian gang abducted 19 people at a checkpoint in Haiti during an airport run, a source at the U.S. embassy told ABC News. The kidnapping occurred at the intersection of “Carrefour Boen” and “La Tremblay 17,” a source at the Haitian presidential office said.

Of the group kidnapped, 16 are reportedly American missionaries from Ohio.  The other three abducted include a Canadian missionary and two Haitian citizens, according to the U.S. Embassy. 

Two French priests were also kidnapped in a separate attack at the same location earlier in the day, according to the source. The Haitian government suspects the gang known as 400 Mawozo is behind the abductions.

It wasn’t immediately clear where the victims were taken and there weren’t any immediate updates on their current condition. The Embassy is working with a special group of Americans in the country who are investigating the abductions.

The Ohio-based ministry Christian Aid Ministries confirmed in a statement that a group of 17 people were “abducted” while they were on a trip to an orphanage Saturday.

“We request urgent prayer for the group of Christian Aid Ministries workers who were abducted while on a trip to visit an orphanage on Saturday, October 16,” the statement read Sunday. “We are seeking God’s direction for a resolution, and authorities are seeking ways to help.

The gang has also been blamed for kidnapping five priests and two nuns earlier this year, according to the Associated Press. 

Our prayers are with the victims and their families and we hope they are returned home safely. We’ll keep you posted on any updates.

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