“My plea is aimed at everyone and anyone who might potentially have the means to help us. To those that want to help but do not have the means, please share Gerco’s story far and wide so that we can have everyone make a noise to bring him home.”
(POC) — Gerco was kidnapped on November 3, 2017 while on his way to the Awbari power plant where he was employed as an on-site emergency medical practitioner.
In a new video released by al-Qaeda recorded on March 15, 2023, Gerco explains exactly what happened the day he was kidnapped he also added he was held in Libya for eight months before he was “sold” to JNIM and taken into northern Mali. He also said that while in captivity, he was shot in the arm, which has left him with limited mobility due to “misaligned bones.” Deventer pleaded for any help to secure his release, adding that he has not spoken with or heard of anything about his wife and three children.
Back in January, analyst Mzahem Alsaloum received a proof of life photo of Deventer that was passed along to his wife, but this most recent video has been the first footage of Deventer since 2019. Captors have previously demanded $1.5 million for his release.
Uganda’s president said Thursday that Ugandan troops recently deployed in the Democratic Republic of Congo under the regional East African Community force will only attack M23 rebels if they fail to implement a peace agreement.
Yoweri Museveni said the DR Congo government and the M23 have agreed to a peace plan, and if followed, there is no need for fighting.
“We are going to be in the Bunagana-Rutshuru area, not in order to fight the M23, but to act as a neutral force as the Congolese use the time to sort out their political problems. Unless we are attacked, we are not there to fight. Fighting may come later if one of the non-state groups does not accept peace on what we all regard as reasonable conditions,” said Museveni.
The East African Community force is meant to contain the M23 rebels who have launched attacks on DR Congo army positions since June last year and occupied several areas.
Formed in 2012, the M23 attacked DR Congo and was overpowered by government troops. It had stopped attacks until last year.
COPENHAGEN (Reuters) -Pirates have abandoned a Danish-owned ship that was hijacked in the Gulf of Guinea last week, and have taken some crew members with them, while others have been brought to safety, the vessel’s owner said on Friday.
The Liberian-flagged oil and chemical tanker Monjasa Reformer with 16 crew members was boarded by five armed people 140 miles west of the Republic of Congo’s Port Pointe-Noire, its owner said at the time.
The Monjasa shipping company declined to say how many crew members were still missing.
The Reformer subsequently went missing, but was later located by the French navy off Sao Tome and Principe, Monjasa said in a statement.
“Our thoughts are with the crew members still missing and their families during this stressful period. Monjasa will continue working closely with the local authorities to support our seafarers safe return to their families,” the company said.
The rescued crew members are all in good health and are receiving proper attention in a secure environment, it added.
There was no damage reported to the ship or its cargo, Monjasa said.
(Reporting by Louise Breusch Rasmussen, editing by Terje Solsvik)
ATHENS — Armenia and Greece have signed a new military cooperation program, the Embassy of Armenia in Greece said in a statement.
The 2023 Armenia-Greece Military Cooperation Program was signed on March 28 by Levon Ayvazyan, the Director of the Department of Defense Policy and International Cooperation at the Ministry of Defense of Armenia and Vasilios Tsami, Director of the Directorate of International Relations of the Hellenic National Defence General Staff.
The program for 2023 includes 21 activities, of which 15 will take place in Greece and 6 in Armenia, and concern:
-Joint training of Special Forces – Special Operations Forces. -Co-training on Electronic Warfare. -Participation in the Multinational Training Centre for Peace Support Operations. -Exchange of experiences and lessons in Air Defence Systems. -Staff exchange and visits to schools and multinational schools, as well as seminars. -Staff meetings and talks on matters of mutual interest, with special emphasis on the field of Military Intelligence.
The signing of the Program confirms the strong military ties of the two countries and further strengthens the operational capabilities and the level of interoperability of their Armed Forces, contributing to the strengthening of the role played by Greece and Armenia in ensuring stability and security in the wider region.