Written by Staff Writer by Staff Writer by Staff Writer by Staff Writer
By Staff Writer by Staff Writer, Correspondent | CNN
Christian missionaries Nicholas and Joy Puleio of Arizona were kidnapped in Haiti, where Christian groups have been targeted for attacks by members of the Kudankulam Narmakali Asom Chetnika People’s Liberation Front (KNOPL).
Joy Puleio was apparently taken after refusing to give KNOPL fighters 3,000 lempiras ($50) in exchange for being released.
In June, Pastor John Ellingson and three others were kidnapped in the South Indian city of Bangalore. Indian police found their bodies months later, with the possibility of torture and over 60 rounds of ammunition in their pockets.
In July, police in Costa Rica said they discovered a group of 11 Filipinos buried in mountains northeast of the capital, San Jose. They said the mass grave contained several bodies believed to be that of kidnappers involved in a series of abductions and murders.
A few weeks earlier, a group of five Japanese volunteers were found stabbed to death in northern Brazil. A ninth member was still missing.
Cases include a Philippine priest in Bangkok, who was held captive for more than a year and eventually beheaded by militant Islamists, as well as an American Christian missionary in northern Nigeria who was kidnapped by Boko Haram for over a year and was later found hanged after reaching agreement with the group.
Tensions were running high following a demonstration in April that saw clashes between supporters of Haiti’s ousted government and supporters of the ousted president’s party.
In June, shots were fired at a camp of foreign workers in Gonaives, following the death of a local captain.
Joy and Nicholas Puleio, 69 and 73 respectively, were missionaries working with St. Vincent de Paul-B-Zire Mission in Haiti.
In 2012, Pastor John Buesseler of Hesperia, Colorado, was kidnapped and murdered in the West African country.
Buesseler was killed in an apparent revenge killing after his abduction. His kidnapping signalled a new wave of kidnappings of foreign aid workers in the Central African Republic.
Hopes were raised after the arrival of a UN mission to protect aid workers, but attacks persist.