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Uganda arrests suspects in kidnap of freed United States tourist, driver

Uganda arrests suspects in kidnap of freed United States tourist, driver

Endicott and her Ugandan tour guide Jean Paul Mirenge Remezo were kidnapped by four gunmen from Queen Elizabeth national park near the Uganda-DR Congo border last week on April 4.

A press release Tuesday from the Uganda Tourism Board, referring to a statement by the Uganda police force, said, "The victims were released as a result of the implicit threat of the use of force after the armed captors knew that they were being pursued by various security agencies".

Police said Sunday evening that the two were in good health.

The two were kidnapped by unknown gunmen on Tuesday at Queen Elizabeth National Park in the western part of the country, and according to the police, the kidnappers had asked for a ransom of 500,000 USA dollars.

Ugandan security forces have arrested a number of suspects in connection with the kidnap of an American tourist and her guide who were freed over the weekend in the western district of Kanungu.

Ugandan police spokesman Enanga is warning other would-be kidnappers to think twice before trying to nab anyone.

Suspected kidnappers of U.S. tourist Kimbley Sue Endicott have been arrested. "I will brief you when I get the information", Enanga said. "Bring them to justice openly and quickly!"

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CBS News has learned that four men with alleged ties to the kidnapping of an American tourist on safari in Uganda are under arrest. President Trump tweeted on Monday.

He said that despite media reports about paying a ransom, "I repeat after the communication by government spokesperson, Ofwono Opondo, who was very direct that it is a policy of government not to pay a ransom".

Although it was first reported that no ransom was given in exchange for the safe return of Endicott and Ramezo, a Ugandan tour official said on the condition of anonymity that an amount of ransom was, in fact, paid for Endicott's freedom.

"Come and enjoy the Pearl of Africa", he said.

In Washington, however, US President Donald Trump said tourists will not feel safe until Uganda catches the kidnappers and brings them to justice. It was unclear who paid or how much was given.

Queen Elizabeth National Park, one of the East African nation's most popular wildlife reserves, runs along the border with conflict-wracked regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Still, the ransom payment continues to be disputed by officials on the record.