An Indian priest, Father Tom Uzhunnalil, who was kidnapped by extremists in Yemen, has been rescued from the conflict-torn country. He was abducted in March last year by Islamic State operatives when they attacked an old-age home run by Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in the Yemeni city of Aden. Father Uzhunnalil was freed with the intervention of Oman’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Yemen is facing a violent conflict between Houthi rebels backing former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, and forces supporting the present dispensation of Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi.
“I am happy to inform that Father Tom Uzhunnalil has been rescued,” external affairs minister, Sushma Swaraj, tweeted.
I am happy to inform that Father Tom Uzhunnalil has been rescued.pic.twitter.com/FwAYoTkbj2
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) September 12, 2017
His rescue from the kidnappers was facilitated after Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said Al Said, looked into the matter. Father Uzhunnalil, who has been brought to Muscat, will reportedly fly down to his hometown of Kerala later in the day.
India had said that it was in regular contact with Yemeni and Saudi authorities regarding the release of the priest. In a video, released soon after his capture, the priest had appealed for help from the Indian government and Pope Francis.