The United Nations says unidentified gunmen have attacked a group of Eritrean asylum seekers in the eastern part of Sudan, kidnapping 14 of them.
On Thursday, the spokesman for UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Nicolas Brass, said based on the information provided by Sudanese authorities, a lorry of the Sudanese Commission of Refugees, which was taking 49 people to the Shagarab refugee camp, was targeted by the gunmen who were on a pickup truck.
"We have been informed by the authorities that there was an abduction of 14 Eritrean asylum seekers on their way to the Shagarab camp from Kassala,” located near the border with Eritrea, Brass added.
The camp, which is situated in eastern Sudan and is jointly run by the Sudanese government and the UN, hosts 15,000 people, mostly asylum seekers.
The UN official explained that six of the abductees - four boys and two girls - were unaccompanied minors under the age of 18, adding that two men and six women were also among the kidnapped.
He noted that at least six other asylum seekers sustained injuries in the incident and were taken to hospital in Shagarab.
"We are closely following up with the relevant authorities who are investigating the incident," Brass said.
The incident was confirmed by an anonymous security source who said that the gunmen "fled in an unknown direction" after the incident.
Reports say that approximately 110,000 Eritreans currently live in Sudan. Thousands of Eritreans cross into Sudan every month in a bid to reach Europe across the Mediterranean.