Italy to spare no effort to take abducted aid worker home safely from Kenya

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-30 01:13:57|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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ROME, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- Italian authorities were closely following the developments in the abduction of a national aid worker occurred in Kenya last week, and would spare no effort to bring her back home, according to officials.

Silvia Romano, a 23-year-old volunteer with Italy-based charity Africa Milele, was abducted by at least three gunmen in the Kilifi County on the coast of Kenya on Nov. 20.

Five people were wounded in the attack, including three minors aged 10, 12, and 16.

Kenyan police have offered a reward of 10,000 U.S. dollars to anyone helping to find the woman.

"We are permanently in contact with Kenyan authorities with regard to the rescue efforts being implemented," Italian Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero Milanesi told journalists at the side of an international conference on death penalty in Rome on Wednesday.

"We are motivated to do everything necessary in order to bring our fellow citizen back home," Ansa news agency quoted the minister as saying.

Moavero Milanesi further explained Italian authorities were keeping a low profile on the issue, as it would happen in any sensitive case of Italian citizens abducted abroad.

"What is happening is a very serious episode, and keeping a dutiful discretion is necessary to let the investigation go ahead and reach a positive result," he said while asked about the latest developments in the case.

Meanwhile, Ansa quoted unnamed Kenyan security sources as reporting that Silvia Romano would have been forced to cut her hair and to wear a niqab, a traditional female Muslim garment that covers the woman's face.

The kidnappers' profile was not yet known, or at least not disclosed by Italian authorities.

As such, it was not clear whether the armed men were common criminals who acted for a possible immediate ransom, or affiliated to radical Islamic groups such as al-Shabaab, which is based in Somalia but has been increasingly active in some areas of Kenya.

So far, however, Kenyan police have named three men who were believed to be the alleged kidnappers, and have arrested one of their wives.

The Italian aid group with which Romano worked manages activities in Kenya concerning "the reception, support, and education" of orphan children, according to the NGO's profile.