BEIRUT

Middle East

Yemen militants demand ransom for South African

The car of an American teacher who was shot dead by gunmen linked to al Qaeda is being towed after the attack in the southern Yemeni city of Taiz, March 18, 2012. REUTERS/Stringer

JOHANNESBURG: The family of a South African teacher who was abducted in Yemen last year says it is trying to raise $3 million to pay a ransom demanded by suspected Al-Qaeda militants who are holding him.

The family of Pierre Korkie, kidnapped in the Yemeni city of Taiz in May, said in a statement Tuesday that friends and local businessmen in South Africa have started a fund-raising campaign to try to secure his release.

The statement says the kidnappers agreed Saturday to allow three more weeks for the ransom payment. They have previously threatened to execute Korkie.

Korkie's wife, Yolande, was abducted with him, but was released this month and returned to South Africa. A non-governmental group, Gift of the Givers, helped mediate her release.

 

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