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Somali Government Detains Six Passengers, Seizes 3.6 Million USD

The Somali government detained six passengers and two small Cessna airplanes that landed today in Mogadishu Airport. According to Interior Minister Abdishakur Hassan Farah, the planes had requested special permission to land in Mogadishu.

Security forces became suspicious after witnessing an exchange of heavy luggage between the two planes. Mr. Farah reported that during inspection, the security forces discovered 3.6 million USD.

Though he did not elaborate, he said that they suspected the money may have been intended as payment for Somali pirates.

Six people, all foreigners, from the planes were detained. Three of the detainees are British, two are Kenyan, and one is American, according to Mr. Farah.

He told VOA Somali Service that security forces will conduct further investigation in order to decide how to proceed.

Mr. Farah reported that the money has been placed in the Central Somalia Bank until further notice.