RealNews

Talks underway for liberation of Europeans kidnapped in Sahara

Talks are underway to engineer the liberation of 31 European tourists who have reportedly been kidnapped by bandits in the Algerian Sahara desert, Algerian Tourism Minister Lakhdar Dorbani revealed. “Contacts are taking place at the moment on the liberation of the tourists,” Dorbani told the national parliament’s tourism commission. The minister declined to specify with whom the talks were being held. Dorbani statement was the first confirmation by an Algerian official that talks were underway to secure the release of the hostages and an implicit confirmation that they are still alive. Some of the 31 tourists — 15 Germans, 10 Austrians, four Swiss nationals, a Dutchman and a Swede — have been missing since February. On Sunday the El Watan newspaper quoted Algerian security officials as saying a gang of bandits had kidnapped the tourists in return for a ransom and that talks on securing their release had been underway for three weeks. Full Story

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