SHAFAQNA – The Sudanese authorities continue their negotiations with the criminals who kidnapped two employees of the Russian UTair airline in the central province of Darfur, a source in the Sudanese Foreign Ministry told RIA Novosti on Sunday.
A manager and a technician employed by Russian UTair airline and contracted by the African Union-UN peacekeeping mission (UNAMID) in western Sudan were abducted by unidentified gunmen on January 29. The Russian citizens are reportedly being held in a remote mountainous area in the Jebel Avon region, not far from Zalingei city in Sudan.
“The negotiations are continuing, but we still have not managed to broker their release,” the source said.
Last month, Sudanese Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Ali Sadiq stated that both Russian citizens are alive and local authorities are continuing efforts to secure their release.
The Sudan’s government reportedly refused to pay a ransom to kidnappers to not encourage lawbreakers to repeat such actions.
The Darfur province has been the epicenter of violent clashes between Sudanese government troops and rebels since 2003. The area has become notorious for a surge in crime, including robberies, kidnappings and killings.