Four armed men kidnapped a woman, an American tourist,Tuesday, at gunpoint at Queen Elizabeth National Park in southwest Uganda.
They have demanded $500,000 as ransom using the victim's phone. An elderly couple who were also at the scene were not taken. "We strongly believe this ransom is the reason behind the kidnap," police said. Authorities took action. Police have dispatched an "elite squad" from the Tourism Police to the park to actively pursue the gunmen and have closed all exit areas on the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Queen Elizabeth National Park in southwest Uganda
"The priority at this point is to locate them, rescue and bring them back to safety," Ofwondo Opondo, the head of Ugandan Media Center, said in a statement. Local police and the national tourist board identified the American woman as Kimberly Sue Endecott, 35. Investigators said the local driver's name also kidnapped is Jean Paul. It is not yet known which group or individuals are behind the kidnapping. Queen Elizabeth National Park is Uganda's most popular tourist destination. It is home to elephants, hippos, lions and chimps, located about 400 km (250 miles) southwest of the capital Kampala, near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.