Seventeen US missionaries were kidnapped overnight along with their families by a criminal gang on the eastern outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Local security sources have made it known. The missionaries, including some children, are in the hands of an armed gang that, for months, has been organizing thefts and kidnappings in the area between the Haitian capital and the border with the Dominican Republic, said a source who is unable to to clarify whether a ransom demand has been made.
The kidnapping occurred as the group was leaving an orphanage in the capital to reach another destination: the gang blocked the bus they were traveling on and forced them to get off.
Haiti has recently been facing a wave of violence, in which armed gangs play an important role, blocking economic activities in the poorest country of the Americas. The unrest escalated after two events that left deep wounds: the assassination of President Jovenel Moise in July and an earthquake in August that killed over 2,000 people.