A Chinese tourist and a hotel employee from a diving resort in East Malaysia were kidnapped by armed men on Wednesday night, according to The South China Morning Post.

Guests at the Singamata Adventures and Reef Resort, in Sabah province on the island of Borneo, were attacked at about 10.30pm Wednesday, when five or six armed men arrived by boat, captured guest Gao Huayun and a Filipino staff member, and left within minutes, the Post reported.

Fifty-nine guests Chinese guests were left at the hotel after the attack, and all have chosen to leave as early as possible.

The attack couldn't come at a worse time, with Sino-Malaysian relations already strained by the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. One hundred fifty-four of that flight's 239 passengers are from China, including Taiwan, and no trace of the plane has been found since it disappeared on March 8.

This latest attack mirrors an incident from April 2000, when 21 European, Malaysian, and Filipino hostages were kidnapped from a resort in the popular scuba diving area of Sipadan, also part of Sabah. The 21 were held for $2.4 million ransom, and were eventually rescued by a Philippine military operation.

No demands have so far been made for the release of Gao and the staff member.

Photo: West China Metropolis Daily

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