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Aden attack: Indian priest and nun still missing

Thiruvananthapuram: There was no information about the Catholic priest from Kerala who was abducted by unidentified gunmen following Friday’s attack on a care home for the elderly in Yemen’s Aden. The attack left four nuns dead and another missing but External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has assured all help, Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said.

An Indian nun was among the four nuns killed in the attack on the home run by the Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity.

Speaking to the agency, Chandy said that he just now spoke to Sushma Swaraj and it was she who told that a nun, who belongs to Chhattisgarh, has also gone missing from the care home in Aden.

“I spoke to her about the reports of a missing Kerala priest and sought help to locate him. She said the Indian embassy has now been closed down and also expressed doubts of the efficacy of the government there, but she has assured that the centre will do its best,” he said.

Earlier, an aide of Chandy, who is keeping in touch with Keralites in Yemen, said that the mother superior of the home, Sister Sally, had a narrow escape when the gunmen opened fire at the care home.

“The priest Tom Kuzhuvennal, who hails from Kottayam district, has been taken away by these unidentified gunmen who opened fire, while Sally was moved to a safe place in the convent by the local people there after hearing the gun shots,” said the official.

“We are in close touch with our people in Yemen who are closely following the developments there,” added the official.

In the gunfire, four nuns of the Missionaries of Charity, including one from India, were killed. The Indian nun has been identified as Sister M. Anseleme, 57, from Jharkhand. Of the other three nuns, two were from Rwanda and another from Kenya.

The home, set up by Mother Teresa in 1992, houses 61 elderly destitute and the Kerala priest had come to the home from an insecure place in Yemen.

News reports indicate that these unidentified gunmen belonged to the Yemen-based affiliate of the Islamic State (IS) group.(IANS)

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