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Aid workers kidnapped in Kenya safely released

The four were working with the Norwegian Refugee Council when they were abducted and one of their colleagues was killed during an ambush last week.

Released aid workers Horat Sadosay, Glenn Costes, centre, Steven Dennis, centre-back, and Astrid Sehl, center-right.
Released aid workers Horat Sadosay, Glenn Costes, centre, Steven Dennis, centre-back, and Astrid Sehl, center-right.
Image: Sayyid Azim/AP/Press Association Images

FOUR AID WORKERS who were kidnapped from a Kenyan refugee camp three days ago by gunman have been released.

All four were working with the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) when they were abducted after a short gunfight at the Dadaab camp. One NRC employee, a driver, was fatally wounded in the incident.

Glenn Costes, from the Philippines, Steven Dennis and Qurat-Ul-Ain Sadazai from Canada and Astrid Sehl (33) from Norway said that they were happy that “this had ended” and that they were alive.

NRC secretary general Elisabeth Rasmusson said that the organisation is “thankful to know that our four colleagues have been found and safety returned”.

“This is a day of relief for us and for the families of the abducted.”

Their families issued a joint statement following news of their release in which they thanked people for the help, support “and warm thoughts” they had received during the ordeal. They also said that their thoughts are with the family of the slain driver, Abdi Ali.

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The four appeared to be in good health following their release, though the AFP reports that Costes limped from a bullet wound to the leg.

A spokesperson for the Kenyan army said that the four were released in a Somali border town following an operation carried out jointly by Somali and Kenyan forces in which one kidnapper was killed. Three people have been arrested.

Officials said that the kidnappers were intercepted as they attempted to move the hostages to an area of dense, remote forest. Somali General Osmail Sahardid, who led the operation, said afterwards: “Thanks to God we foiled their aims of taking the hostages into the forest.”

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