Navy SEAL Team 6 commandos recently rescued an American citizen who was kidnapped from his home in southern Niger.
The kidnapped man, whose parents are missionaries, lives with his wife and young daughter on a farm near the border with Nigeria.
According to American and Nigerian officials, armed assailants confronted the man while he was with his family in his backyard and asked him for money. He offered them $40, but the gunmen seized him and took him away on their motorbikes. The captors demanded nearly one million dollars in ransom for his release.
An American official claimed the assailants were criminals who planned to sell the man to terrorist groups in the region. They had taken the 27-year-old American to northern Nigeria. Authorities were able to track his captors' cell phones and rescued him there.
A spokesperson for the Pentagon said the victim is safe and "in the care of the U.S. Department of State." He was allegedly taken to an American airbase in Niamey, Niger's capital, where he was reunited with his family.
Officials in Niger and Nigeria contributed to the swift operation. All but one of the captors was killed during the raid. No American military personnel were injured, nor was the victim. "Navy Commandos Rescue American Kidnapped in Niger" www.nytimes.com (Oct. 31, 2020).