Ugandan security forces yesterday scoured dense bush in the hunt for a US tourist and her safari guide who were kidnapped by gunmen in a national park.
"The operation to rescue the tourist is still ongoing," Uganda's tourism minister, Godfrey Kiwanda, told AFP yesterday.
Four kidnappers stopped a group of tourists at gunpoint around dusk on Tuesday as they drove through the Queen Elizabeth National Park on safari to see wild animals.
Police identified the American as a 35-year-old woman and said the kidnappers had used her mobile telephone to demand a ransom of $500,000 (445,000 euros) for the release of the pair. The driver is a 48-year-old safari guide with years of experience.
Police spokeswoman Polly Namaye said all efforts were being made, adding that Uganda's top-ranking police officer, Inspector General Martin Okoth Ochola, had flown to the area to lead operations.
"The operation is continuing," she told AFP.
The gunmen dragged the pair from their safari vehicle, but left behind two other tourists, whom police described as an "elderly couple". They managed to raise the alarm from the lodge where they were staying.