19:59 12 Jan 2024

Four Ukrainians captured on UN helicopter in Somalia – Foreign Ministry

Photo: Facebook / Oleh Nikolenko

Ukrainian foreign ministry is investigating all the details of the UN helicopter crash during its mission in Somalia.

Authorities are contacting the company that owns the helicopter to coordinate actions, the ministry's spokesman Oleh Nikolenko reports.

"Our citizens were members of the crew of a helicopter of the UN Mission in Somalia that crashed. They have been identified," Nikolenko said.

The helicopter belonged to a Ukrainian private company that was fulfilling a contract for transportation ordered by the UN, and that there were five foreigners on board along with the Ukrainians.

The Ukrainian Embassy in Kenya and the Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the UN have already received urgent instructions from the Foreign Ministry to take the necessary measures.

During a joint press conference with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said that four sailors were being held captive by the Houthis, and work was underway to return them.

For several years now, the country has been facing a critical food situation, which has resulted in the worst drought in a decade, killing more than 43,000 people.

The UN and other donors have been providing systematic assistance to Somalia. The budget for humanitarian assistance to Somalia amounts to €72 million.


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