Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

'Macron-economy' pun already worn out

Read more

DEBATE

What Next for Gaza? Lasting Ceasefire Agreed After 50 Days of War

Read more

DEBATE

What Next for Gaza? Lasting Ceasefire Agreed After 50 Days of War (part 2)

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

New French economy minister signals changes to 35-hour week

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Valls ♥ Business

Read more

FOCUS

Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Terrorist ransoms: Should governments pay up for hostages?

Read more

ENCORE!

Kristen Stewart and Juliette Binoche star in 'Clouds of Sils Maria'

Read more

WEB NEWS

India: journalist launches "Rice Bucket Challenge"

Read more

  • Assad cannot be partner in fight against terrorism, says Hollande

    Read more

  • Evidence of Russian support for Ukrainian rebel counter-attack grows

    Read more

  • Platini will not run against Blatter for FIFA presidency

    Read more

  • Air France pilots announce week-long strike in September

    Read more

  • Erdogan's inauguration paves way for constitutional change

    Read more

  • New French economy minister takes swipe at 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Air France suspends flights to Ebola-stricken Sierra Leone

    Read more

  • Uzi shooting by 9-year-old rekindles gun debate

    Read more

  • Mother of American journalist asks IS leader for his release

    Read more

  • UN probe accuses Syrian regime, Islamists of ‘crimes against humanity’

    Read more

  • Uruguayans sign up to grow marijuana at home

    Read more

  • Missouri governor appoints black public safety director

    Read more

  • French unemployment rises 0.8% in July to record high

    Read more

  • Video: Iraq’s Yazidis flee to spiritual capital of Lalish

    Read more

  • Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

    Read more

  • Airstrikes and Assad - Obama’s military conundrum in Syria

    Read more

  • IMF’s Lagarde investigated in French corruption case

    Read more

Middle east

Abducted French aid workers in al Qaeda hands

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-07-27

Yemeni militants linked to Al Qaeda are holding three French aid workers abducted three months ago in the southeastern part of the country and are now asking for a $12 million ransom, security and tribal sources said on Wednesday.

AFP - Three French aid workers abducted in Yemen are being held by men linked to the country’s al-Qaida offshoot who are demanding $12 million in ransom, security officials and local tribesmen said Wednesday.

The two women and one man were abducted three months ago while working for the aid group Triangle Generation Humanitaire, which is based in Lyon, France. They were seized in eastern Yemen’s Hadramawt province, which is home to al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.

Intelligence chief Ghaleb al-Qamish and other senior government officials have asked prominent figures in the town of Sayoun to try to mediate their release, the security officials and tribesmen said.

They said the three were being held by al-Qaida members or by people affiliated with the militants. They spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

After the aid workers’ disappearance on May 28, Yemeni officials initially said they feared the group had been taken by tribesmen, who frequently use abductions - including of foreigners - to press the government for concessions, such as the release of fellow tribesmen in prison.

In most of those cases, the captives are freed unharmed. In the past few years, however, al-Qaida has begun kidnapping foreigners as well, sometimes with lethal results.

The director of the French aid group, Patrick Verbruggen, said it has had no contact with the kidnappers since the abduction in May.

He said he had no information on whether the aid workers were being held by al-Qaida or if a ransom had been demanded.

French Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said Wednesday that the ministry also had not heard that the group is being held by al-Qaida and that they are demanding a ransom.

“We have been fully mobilized since the beginning to obtain the release of our compatriots, and in their interest, we should observe the greatest discretion to preserve the effectiveness of our actions,” he told an online briefing.
 

Date created : 2011-07-27

  • YEMEN - FRANCE

    Kidnapped French aid workers 'located' and 'alive'

    Read more

  • YEMEN

    Deadly car bomb blast strikes Yemeni army checkpoint

    Read more

  • YEMEN

    Yemeni al Qaeda leader killed in battle

    Read more

COMMENT(S)