Gunmen have kidnapped two Chinese men and a Nigerian man working for a local
company in the southeastern state of Anambra, police said on Monday.
This report was also confirmed by the Chinese Foreign Ministry on March 20,
saying the Chinese side is trying to verify the matter and negotiate with
the Nigerian side.
The ministry urges the Nigerian side to do its utmost to rescue the
The Chinese were the first foreigners kidnapped outside of
Nigeria's oil heartland in the southern Niger Delta.
The men were abducted
from their workplace in the industrial town of Nnewi on Saturday, March
17 raising concerns a spate of hostage-taking in the Niger Delta may be spreading
to other parts of Nigeria.
Police said they were yet to establish who
the kidnappers were and what their demands might be.
"The two Chinese
nationals and one Nigerian were kidnapped at the place where they were working.
We are investigating the matter," a police spokesman said by telephone from the
state capital Awka.
He said the police suspect a separatist group
operating in the southeastern region may be behind kidnappings the men from the
premises of the Innoson Group of Companies Ltd.