France warns of kidnappings, attack risk in Benin
Written by Reuters, Monday, 25 February 2013
The advisory came after a French family of seven, including four children, were abducted by suspected Islamist militants in Cameroon on Tuesday, the first case of foreigners being seized in the mostly Muslim north of the country.
It highlighted the threat to French interests in West Africa since Paris deployed thousands of troops to Mali to oust al Qaeda-linked Islamists who controlled the country's north, Reuters reports.
"Despite the Benin authorities committing to increase security in particular areas, the risk of kidnappings and attacks exists in Benin," the foreign ministry said in an updated travel advisory on its website.
It warned its 3,700 citizens in Benin to avoid going out at night and against all travel on the main road leading from Tchaourou, about 350 kilometers north of the capital Porto-Novo, to Malanville and the W National Park on the border with Niger.
The United States and African governments are backing the six-week-old campaign against militants in Mali, where Benin has also sent troops to join an African force being deployed.
Islamists have threatened to strike back at anyone who supports the mission.
The kidnapping in Cameroon brought to 15 the number of French citizens being held in West Africa.
Security forces are searching for the family who were taken into Nigeria, local police said on Friday.
French President Francois Hollande said on Saturday there was no new information on the whereabouts of the hostages.
Top stories this week
Thales unveils unique counter-piracy service solution
by Thales, 31 October 2014
PASTOR is a high-level services solution based on a combination of early warning, prevention and deterrence systems.
Jens Thostrup - new head of PMR Terminals Business and Indirect Sales at Airbus Defence and Space
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 30 October 2014
He replaces Pierre Lopez as head of the Terminals Business and Indirect Sales.
Nautic Africa signs exclusive agency agreement with Doen Pacific
by Nautic Africa, 29 October 2014
Nautic will install water-jet systems at competitive pricing for its customers in the sub-Saharan region.
New-generation Saab surface radar on track, in production
by Saab, 29 October 2014
Production of the first Giraffe 4A system for an undisclosed customer is ongoing at Saab in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Sustained revenue growth, strong order book drive Denel's new growth era
by Denel Corporate, 29 October 2014
The company's financial results for 2013/2014 show revenue growth of 17%, improved profit and the largest multi-year order book in its history.
Saab and Brazil sign contract for Gripen NG
by Saab, 28 October 2014
The defence company will develop and produce 36 Gripen NG fighter aircraft for the Brazilian Air Force.