Zein Sadat, one of the surviving brothers of former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, told CNN his 14-year-old grandniece Zeina was kidnapped Sunday morning on her way to school.
Sadat said the kidnappers had been in telephone contact with Zeina's father, and had demanded a ransom of 5 million Egyptian pounds (some $840,000) for her safe return.
Kidnapping is extremely rare in Egypt. And the targeting of a prominent political family is likely to raise fears in a country struggling with instability after the revolution that ousted Hosni Mubarak in early February.
Zein Sadat denied there were political motives for the kidnapping, saying the hostage takers appeared "unprofessional."
"We are in a crisis as a family," he said. "We are worried they will kill the girl."
Anwar Sadat was assassinated in 1981.