French Aid Worker Released In Yemen, ICRC Says

by
Reuters
A French aid worker kidnapped in northern Yemen in April by armed men has been released and is in good health, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Saturday.

A view shows the Old Sanaa city January 28, 2012.

A French aid worker kidnapped in northern Yemen in April by armed men has been released and is in good health, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Saturday.

"Benjamin Malbrancke, the delegate of the International Committee of the Red Cross abducted on 21 April by armed individuals near the town of Hodeida, in northern Yemen, is free," the humanitarian agency said in a brief statement.

Referring to an al Qaeda-linked cell, ICRC spokesman Hicham Hassan told Reuters in Geneva: "He (Malbrancke) was handed over to ICRC representatives by Ansar al-Sharia on Friday. We don't know who the abductors were."

In June, a Yemeni employee of the ICRC was killed by an air strike in Abyan province. A local official told Reuters that the Yemeni air force had conducted the strike that killed the aid worker who he said had been trying to contact al Qaeda militants in order to negotiate the release of his French colleague.