A U.S. citizen kidnapped in Benin was lured to the West African country by criminals the American met online, sources told Reuters new agency Wednesday.
A kidnapping notice was first posted Tuesday on the U.S. Embassy in Cotonou’s website, but officials did not identify the victim.
Embassy officials have "no reason to believe that other U.S. citizens or interests are at risk," said the post. "The investigation is ongoing, and there are no further details at this time."
A security source told Reuters the kidnap victim was a man who had traveled to the country last week to meet a group of people from Benin and neighboring Nigeria, Reuters reported. He was abducted and then forced to contact his family to ask for a ransom payment, the source in Benin said.
There were no apparent links to Islamist groups or pirates operating in the region, the source said.
Francine Ochabi, the press attachè for Benin's president, told The Associated Press she was not aware of the kidnapping and that the government had no comment.
An embassy spokeswoman declined to provide any further information.
Kidnappings of foreigners are rare in Benin, a French-speaking country of about 9 million people, but there have been several abductions in Nigeria this year.
A number of foreigners have been kidnapped in West Africa over the past two years after making contacts on the Internet.
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