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The Globe and Mail

Canadians taken hostage abroad in the past decade

Julie Milligan: A Drayton Valley, Alta., woman who was abducted in April 2009 while on a Rotary Club exchange trip in Kaduna, Nigeria. Ms. Mulligan spent two weeks in captivity as her kidnappers demanded $834,000 in ransom. Nigerian security officials set up a sting while pretending to pay the ransom, and arrested seven people in connection with the abduction.

Robert Fowler and Louis Guay: Two Canadian diplomats kidnapped in December 2008. Mr. Fowler and Mr. Guay were held in a remote part of the Sahara desert for 130 days before a secret deal was struck to release the two men. In exchange for the diplomats, four terrorists, including a bomb-maker, were released from a prison in Mali. The Canadian government says that it had no hand in making the deal.

Beverley Giesbrecht: Ms. Giesbrecht, a journalist from West Vancouver, was taken by masked gunmen in the Bannu region of northern Pakistan in November 2008. Her kidnapping, and her captors' threat to behead the woman if a ransom wasn't paid, ignited debate on the government's responsibilities to citizens travelling abroad. A year later, Ms. Giesbrecht has not been released.

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Mellissa Fung: A CBC correspondent in Afghanistan, Ms. Fung was kidnapped in October 2008 after interviewing Afghans who had fled their homes. She was kept in the mountains near Kabul for 28 days, during which time a media blackout kept her abduction out of the news.

Unidentified oil worker: In October 2007, a Dafur rebel group launched an attack on an oilfeild in neighbouring Sudan. The group claims that it abducted two foreign oil workers - one Canadian and one Iraqi. The Canadian government has not confirmed any abduction, and no one has been identified as being taken.

Ed Hughes: The Canadian missionary ran an orphanage in Cabaret, Haiti, that was attacked by gunmen on June 19, 2006. The masked men stole electronic equipment before abducting Mr. Hughes. They originally demanded $530,000 (U.S.) for the missionary's release. Eventually, Mr. Hughes was allowed back home in late July after $2,000 (U.S.) was paid to his captors.

Adam Budzanowski: Mr. Budzanowski was among 11 people held for more than 30 hours by gunmen in Palestine in March, 2006. His kidnappers thought that he was American, and were hoping to use his capture as leverage to stop an Isreali attack in the city of Jericho.

James Loney and Harmeet Singh Sooden: Four aid workers - including Canadians Mr. Loney and Mr. Sooden - were kidnapped in Iraq in December, 2005. The group was held for four months, during which time one of the hostages, American Tom Fox, was killed. The three remaining men were rescued in a joint operation between a number of countries.

Zaid Meerwali: Leaving Iraq for Toronto in the 1990s, Mr. Meerwali became a successful accountant. He was abducted when he returned to Iraq to get married in July, 2005. Although his family was ready to pay a ransom of $250,000 (Can), Mr. Meerwali was shot and killed by his captors after more than two weeks in captivity.

Fairuz Yamulky: Abducted outside Fallujah in October 2004 while working for a company in Jordan, Ms. Yamulky was held in Iraq for two weeks. During that time, she tried to escape three times - each attempt foiled by booby traps her captors had set up. While the kidnappers negotiated with her father, Ms. Yamulky convinced one of them to help her escape. The pair fled and were picked up by the U.S. military.

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Naji al-Kuwaiti and Mohammed Rifat: A businessman from Mississauga, Mr. al-Kuwaiti was abducted while trying to establish an import-export business in Iraq in May 2004. He was held for a week before the Canadian government secured his release. Mr. Rifat of Toronto was taken in Iraq around April of the same year. Despite pleas from the Canadian government, no organization ever took credit for the abduction. Mr. Rifat is presumed dead.

Fadi Fadel: A humanitarian worker in Iraq was kidnapped in April, 2004. Mr. Fadel was abducted by men who accused the Syrian-born Canadian of being an agent for Israel. It took a week of negotiations by the Canadian government to convince the captors of Mr. Fadel's nationality. He was freed shortly after.

Pierre Belanger: Ottawa man kidnapped while visiting the Philippines in November 2001. Mr. Belanger was taken from a beach party and hidden in a remote part of the country for nearly two months before Philippine security forces staged a rescue operation. Two of Mr. Belanger's kidnappers were killed in the rescue.

Shirley Macklin: A Winnipeg native, Ms. Macklin was among the 155 passengers held hostage for eight days on Indian Airlines Flight 814 in December 1999. The plane was stormed by four gunmen, who took the passengers hostage while demanding money and the release of 36 prisoners from Indian jails. The plane finally landed in New Delhi on Jan. 1 after the release demand was met. One of the passengers on the plane, Rippan Katyall of India, was killed by his captors.

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