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Renewed calls for Darfur doctor to be released

Renewed calls for Darfur doctor to be released
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An Italian aid group said on Wednesday that it was “optimistic” that one of its doctors kidnapped in western Sudan’s Darfur region would be freed unharmed.

Francesco Azzara was abducted on Sunday as he was driving to the airport in Nyala, capital of South Darfur province.

The aid agency Emergency once again called for his kidnappers to release him.

“We’re in permanent contact with the region’s authorities. We’ve asked them about the ransom and they say they haven’t had any demand yet,” said Rossella Miccio from the Emergency NGO.

“We are optimistic because there’s no particular reason for anyone to have a grudge against Francesco or the Emergency NGO. On the contrary, we have received lots of positive feedback from everybody in Nyala and in Khartoum.”

Azzara is in charge of logistics at the paediatric centre opened in Nyala by Emergency in July 2010.

The Darfur conflict, which has killed 300,000 people since 2003 re-ignited last year when government forces and rebel groups clashed once again.