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U.S. forces rescue abducted American missionary in Nigeria

President Donald Trump speaks before boarding Air Force One on Saturday Associated Press/ Photo by Alex Brandon

U.S. forces rescue abducted American missionary in Nigeria

Troops with the elite U.S. SEAL Team Six and other members of a joint special operations unit on Saturday rescued 27-year-old Philip Walton from his captors in northern Nigeria. Armed kidnappers riding motorcycles had abducted Walton from his farm across the border in southern Niger on Tuesday. U.S. officials confirmed he has reunited with his family.

Who was behind the kidnapping? Local officials in Niger did not identify the abductors but noted they demanded a ransom. Kidnappers often sell hostages to terror groups. Another American missionary Jeffery Woodke remains in captivity after gunmen abducted him from his home in central Niger in 2016. In a Saturday statement, President Donald Trump hailed the “daring” rescue and said no American service member was harmed in the operation.

Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read my report on Jeffery Woodke’s abduction.

Onize Ohikere

Onize is WORLD's Africa reporter. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate and earned a journalism degree from Minnesota State University-Moorhead. Onize resides in Abuja, Nigeria.



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