ISIS kidnapped about 20 medical workers with the Ibn Sina Hospital in Sirte, Libya, on Monday during an attack on the facility, according to a hospital official.
A group of more than 30 gunmen from the Islamic State attacked the hospital while a bus was waiting to take the workers, who are not Libyan, to the capital of Tripoli.
Most of the abductees are from the Philippines. Others are from Ukraine, India and Serbia, said the hospital official. The official believes the ISIS gunmen didn’t want the staff to leave the city because they are the only medical team there if they needed them for the group’s wounded and injured.
Sirte lies halfway between Tripoli and Benghazi. The city was the final major stronghold of Moammar Gadhafi loyalists in the Libyan civil war. Gadhafi was killed there.
ISIS took control of the city late last year, including the hospital. The group claimed responsibility for the slaughter of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in the country about two months ago.
The hospital staff members who were kidnapped were trying to leave the city because of the security situation and the control of ISIS over the city, the official said.