Al-Shuraif is to deliver them to the Yemeni authorities.
 
There were conflicting reports about whether the tribesmen were pressing for an end to a land dispute, or for the release of imprisoned tribal members.
 
It is not clear if either of the demands were met.
 
Tribes have abducted more than 200 foreigners over the past 15 years in an attempt to extract concessions from the central government, which is trying to restore order in the lawless countryside.

Most have been released unharmed.
 
In December 2005, five members of a German family, including Juergen Chroboga, a former deputy foreign minister, were held for three days by tribal kidnappers demanding the release of five members of their clan.