In­dian priest says Ye­meni cap­tors did him no phys­i­cal harm

Imperial Valley Press - - CLASSIFIED -

A Catholic priest from In­dia who was freed after be­ing held 18 months in Ye­men says he was never phys­i­cally harmed dur­ing his cap­tiv­ity, even if his cap­tors feigned hit­ting him on videos seek­ing ran­som.

The Rev. Tom Uzhun­nalil told re­porters Satur­day that his kid­nap­pers “have not in­jured me at all.” In­dian of­fi­cials an­nounced Tues­day that Uzhun­nalil had been freed and brought to Vat­i­can City. The head of the Sale­sian or­der to which Uzhun­nalil be­longs, Don. A.F. Ar­time, said they have no knowl­edge of any ran­som hav­ing been paid.

Uzhun­nalil lost about 66 pounds dur­ing his or­deal and was gen­er­ally weak­ened. Uzhun­nalil said his cap­tors pro­cured tablets to treat his di­a­betes, and took care of him by giv­ing him food and en­cour­ag­ing ex­er­cise in­doors.

Fa­ther Tom Uzhun­nalil at­tends a press con­fer­ence on his re­cent res­cue from Ye­meni mil­i­tants, in Rome, Satur­day. Uzhun­nalil had worked for more than four years as a chap­lain at the home in Aden in south­ern Ye­men es­tab­lished by Mother Teresa’s Mis­sion­ar­ies of Char­ity and was ab­ducted by mil­i­tants in March 2016 when they at­tacked the home, killing 16 people, in­clud­ing four nuns. AP PHOTO/ AN­DREW MEDICHINI

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