Local News

Ordeal of 3 kidnapped Saudi students ends

By Qaed A Al-Ju’rah

SANA’A: Saudi and Yemeni government agencies freed three Saudi students Sunday, two days after they were kidnapped in the capital city of Yemen, Sana’a, said Riyadh Bin Ibrahim Al-Nafeesa, head of the Saudis’ Affairs Department in the Saudi Embassy in Sana’a.

The students at the Yemeni Science and Technology University in Sana’a were seized by a kidnapper from the Dahm tribe in the Yemeni Al-Jouf Governorate who hoped to exchange their freedom for information about his brother who disappeared in Saudi Arabia three years ago, officials said. Al-Nafeesa said in a telephone conversation from Sana’a that the students are on their way to the border region of Najran, their place of residence.

“The Saudi Embassy, Yemeni authorities, and chiefs of tribes succeeded in solving the issue,” Al-Nafeesa said. “The kidnapper released the students without any pressure and he was very cooperative.”

Al-Nafeesa pointed out that the kidnapper informed him that he responded to his mother’s request, and that she cut a large portion of her hair as a sign of protest in order to get the students released. A tribal chief pledged to exert all efforts in contacting the embassy to look for the missing son who may have entered Saudi Arabia illegally.

Al-Nafeesa said he learned about the kidnapping Saturday from a Yemeni man who was acting suspiciously. Al-Nafeesa said that the man told him that a fellow tribal member named Saud Ali Hussein Ateeq kidnapped the students and provided him with his phone number. The man told Al-Nafeesa he could speak to one of the students to check on his condition. Al-Nafeesa said the Yemeni kidnapper revealed that he would release the students in exchange for information about his missing brother.