Kerala priest Father Tom Uzhunnalil, who was allegedly abducted by ISIS from an old-age home run by Missionaries of Charity in the Yemeni city of Aden last last year, has been rescued, said External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Tuesday.
“I am happy to inform that Father Tom Uzhunnalil has been rescued,” tweeted Swaraj.
Uzhunnalil, who belongs from Kerala’s Kottayam district, was abducted during a terrorist raid on a Missionaries of Charity-run old age home in Aden on March 4, 2016. In the terrorist attack 16 people including nuns were killed in the attack.
The priest from Kerala was sent to Yemen in 2010. He was asked to stay back till another person assumed charges after completion of five years.
Oman’s state new agency ONA has posted a picture of the Kerala priest showing him in good health after being transferred to the Oman’s capital Muscat.
Oman Observer in a tweet wrote, “With #Oman help, #Vatican priest Uzhunnalil freed from #Yemen.”
Oman Observer quoting state-run Oman News Agency said, “Father Tom expressed thanks to God Almighty, appreciation to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos and everyone who prayed for his safe release. ”
According to reports Uzhunnalil will be flown to India in a chartered plane.
The priest’s family members were happy on learning is safe rescue.
Earlier this year Uzhunnalil in a five-minute long video message has accused the Indian government and Vatican for not doing anything for his rescue.
He then in the message had pleaded, “My dear family people, do what you can to help me be released. Please, please do what you can to help to get me released. May God bless you for that."