MADAGASCAR: Growing trend of kidnap-for-ransom targeting business owners
The five K&R incidents this year occurred in various areas of the capital Antananarivo. On 4 January, a Karana businessman was kidnapped in the Tanjombato suburb of Antananarivo despite having two private close protection guards with him at the time. On 10 February, a Karana French-Malagasy dual national whose family owns a distribution company in the commercial district of Tsaralalna was kidnapped outside his home. On 11 April, five armed men kidnapped the teenage son of a textile business owner in the Andranomena neighbourhood, 1km from the United States embassy. The incident occurred near a police checkpoint but the officers were unable to stop the attack as they were unarmed. A similar incident occurred on 14 May when the son of a Karana businessman was kidnapped by twelve armed men upon leaving a funeral in the upscale Ilafy neighbourhood. That victim was also accompanied by close protection security details. Finally, on 7 June four armed men kidnapped a man in the residential Behoririka neighbourhood. The victim was the owner of the Grand Mellis hotel in the Tsaralalna suburb of Antananarivo. Most of the victims were released after ten days, following the likely payment of a ransom by the family.
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