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No word on Cuban medics 120 days on

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Today marks exactly four months since two Cuban doctors stationed in Mandera were abducted by gunmen on April 12.

The two were kidnapped in a daring road ambush by suspected al-Shabaab militants who killed one of the police officers escorting them.

Since then, little is known about the government’s efforts to rescue Dr Landy Rodriguez (a surgeon) and Dr Herera Correa (general practitioner).

“Efforts are ongoing to rescue the doctors but I don’t know when they will be released. What I know is that they are alive wherever they are,” said Mandera police commander Jeremiah ole Kosiom.

He declined to share more information about the rescue plan.

A week after the abduction, local elders volunteered to negotiate their release.

They crossed the border through Elwak on April 20 with El-Adde as their first destination since reports had indicated that the doctors were being held there.

“Those we met at El-Adde denied abducting the doctors but admitted holding them in one of their hideouts. We were mistreated there,” one of the elders told the Nation.

They returned after two weeks in El-Adde.

“We eventually met the doctors but after a tough time. They (Somali elders) warned against sustained military attacks on their camps in search of the Cubans and we agreed on condition that the doctors are not harmed,” said the elder.

READ ALSO:   Police: Abducted Cubans had expressed fear for their safety

They also negotiated the ransom but could not agree on the figure. “The figure was higher than what has been reported in the media but we shall still engage them on that because these doctors are innocent.”

A section of the media had placed the ransom at Sh150 million.

Intelligence sources said the Cubans were abducted by bandits who handed them over to suspected al-Shabaab militants, who sought ransom through proxies.

A recent security report showed that the doctors were moved to Halaanqo forest near Barawe town where they were allegedly converted to Islam.

The local security team later blamed the county government for the abduction.

Source:nation.co.ke

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Austrian tourist’s binge turns tragic in Mtwapa

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Just after midnight on September 4, Armin Roger Roeseler left Indiana Hotel with his friend Dietmar Markus and headed to Casuarina Club in Mtwapa, Kilifi County.

At the club, two women identified as Everylne Chengetich and Lydia Nyaboke joined Mr Roeseler — who was visiting Kenya for the first time — and his host Markus.

As the partying progressed, Mr Roeseler, a body builder, allegedly inquired from the women where he would get cocaine.

“They had little knowledge of where they could get the drug and requested for help from a taxi driver who volunteered to guide the foreigners,” states a police report.

Mr Roeseler, 47, gave the taxi driver Sh10,000 to fetch the drug. He reportedly injected himself in the arm with the substance and went on drinking at the club.

Police records show he began feeling sick and made several trips to the toilet. As things got worse, Markus advised him to return to their hotel. “He refused and went on partying until 4am when his condition worsened,” reads the police report.

Shortly afterwards, he lost consciousness. Bouncers rushed him to the nearby Jambo Jipya Medical Clinic, where he was referred to Jocham Hospital in Mombasa.

READ ALSO:   Police: Abducted Cubans had expressed fear for their safety

He was pronounced dead on arrival. An autopsy revealed that his death was caused by a drug overdose. The two women were arrested, recorded statements and charged at Shanzu Law Court with the murder of Mr Roeseler.

On Monday the women appeared before Shanzu Senior Resident Magistrate David Odhiambo but did not take plea.

State Counsel Rosemary Nandi said they were reviewing the file before making a decision on charges they may prefer against them. “The file has not been brought to court because the ODPP is still reviewing the evidence gathered before a decision is made on the fate of the suspects. We ask for more time to avail the file,” Ms Nandi said. Sources privy to the investigations said the two might be discharged because the postmortem report indicated that Mr Roeseler died of a cocaine overdose.

Prepared by Jocham Hospital, the postmortem report shows the drug affected his nervous system.

But, while asking for more time to detain the suspects, investigating officer Sammy Oyaro said Mr Roeseler might have been drugged.

“I am yet to record statements from all witnesses,” said the officer.

The court directed that they remain in custody for two more days.

They were detained at Mtwapa Police Station as investigations continue.

READ ALSO:   Cuban doctors leave 3 counties in a huff

The body of the deceased was cremated in Nairobi on September 6, after his family — based in Austria — gave the consulate the green light to do so.

Police said Mr Roeseler had been in Kenya for barely three weeks. He was invited by Markus, who once lived in Diani, Kwale County, before moving to Mtwapa.

Cases of revellers being drugged are rampant in Mtwapa, the ‘village that never sleeps’, due to its vibrant night life. It has hundreds of clubs that attract tourists from Germany, Italy, Austria and Switzerland.

BY nation.co.ke

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Increasing suicide cases shake Kirinyaga

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Three people died by suicide in Kirinyaga County on Tuesday, raising concerns among national government officials.

The body of 34-year-old Stephen Kinyua was found hanging from a tree in Kiaragana village while that of John Maina was found inside a house in Riakiania.

At Thumaita village, residents were shocked when they stumbled upon Peter Kinyua’s body hanging from a tree.

They reported the matter at Kianyaga Police Station.

The three, from different villages, did not leave suicide notes to explain their actions.

Their bodies were taken to Kerugoya Referral Hospital mortuary.

Ndia Deputy County Commissioner Mr Moses Ivuto said cases of suicide were on the rise in the region.

“They are reported on daily basis. We are concerned,” Mr Ivuto said, citing domestic feuds and drug abuse.

“When men quarrel with their spouses and abuse drugs, they kill themselves.”

He called on local church leaders to intervene.

“Church leaders should embark on aggressive counselling of residents, men in particular, so that we do not continue losing more lives this way,” he said.

By nation.co.ke

READ ALSO:   Cuban doctors leave 3 counties in a huff
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US cancer survivor swims across English Channel

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An American breast cancer survivor on Tuesday became the first person to swim across the English Channel four times non-stop in a 54-hour feat of endurance.

Sarah Thomas, 37, an open water marathon swimmer from the US state of Colorado, could be seen in a video posted on Facebook arriving at Dover on the southern English coast with a group of supporters cheering her on.

“I feel a little sick,” she is heard saying following the herculean effort, which reportedly saw her cover close to 130 miles (209 kilometres) due to strong tides.

Only four swimmers have previously completed the approximately 21-mile Channel crossing between Britain and France three times without stopping.

“I just can’t believe we did it,” Thomas told the BBC.

“I’m really just pretty numb. There was a lot of people on the beach to meet me and wish me well and it was really nice of them, but I feel just mostly stunned.”

Thomas said the hardest part was dealing with the salt water, which left her throat and mouth sore, while she also got stung in the face by a jellyfish.

The athlete relied on a protein recovery drink mixed with electrolytes and caffeine – which was tied to a rope and thrown to her every 30 minutes – to complete the feat, according to her mother.

READ ALSO:   Police: Abducted Cubans had expressed fear for their safety

Endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh wrote on Twitter that her achievement was “extraordinary, amazing, super-human”.

“Just when we think we’ve reached the limit of human endurance, someone shatters the records,” he wrote.

In a post on Saturday before setting off, Thomas wrote: “This swim is dedicated to all the survivors out there.

“This is for those of us who have prayed for our lives, who have wondered with despair about what comes next, and have battled through pain and fear to overcome,” she wrote.

The marathon swimmer received the cancer diagnosis four months after an unprecedented August 2017 non-stop solo swim of 104.6 miles in Lake Champlain on the US-Canada border.

She underwent treatment for the aggressive form of breast cancer – which had already begun spreading to the lymph nodes under one of her arms – in the summer of 2018, according to a fundraising website for a documentary about her achievements.

“I was at the peak of my athletic accomplishments… and then I got diagnosed with cancer,” Thomas said in a video posted on the Kickstarter website.

“It’s part of who I am now, part of my story. I just hope it never comes back but if it does, to know that I did everything I wanted to do in life.”

READ ALSO:   Cuban doctors leave 3 counties in a huff

In the video Thomas, who finished her first open-water event in 2007 and had previously made two Channel swims in 2012 and 2016, said swimming across the Dover Strait had been a lifelong dream and “just as hard as climbing Mount Everest”.

“When you’re a kid you just dream of swimming the English Channel.”

By nation.co.ke

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