Suspected Pirates Kidnap French Woman From Kenyan Island

Posted October 1st, 2011 at 7:20 am (UTC-5)
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Kenyan authorities say suspected Somali pirates have kidnapped a French woman from a beach house on Manda Island, near the resort town of Lamu.

Reuters reports the woman's fiance says the gunmen targeted the woman when they broke into the couple's house. The woman, who uses a wheelchair, was carried by the kidnappers to a getaway boat.

Police and navy officers have been chasing the suspects, who authorities say appeared to be headed toward Somalia. Officials say shots have been fired. There are no immediate reports of anyone being wounded.

Saturday's abduction of a French woman near Lamu is the second of a foreigner within a month. In early September, pirates shot and killed a British man while kidnapping his wife.

Pirates have brought in millions of dollars in ransom for several years by attacking large ships, but in recent years, they have also attacked smaller targets such as private yachts. The attacks continue, even as U.S. and European navy patrols increase.