Seven hostages freed in Nigeria

All seven foreign hostages who were being held in Nigeria's southern oil producing Niger Delta have been released.

    Nigerian soldiers patrol a natural gas loading terminal in Niger

    The men are four Britons, one Romanian, one Malaysian and one Indonesian.

    They were kidnapped on October 3 in an unprecedented raid on a residential compound for expatriate contractors working for Exxon Mobil. Two guards were killed by the attackers.

    Suur Chafa, the deputy superintendent of police in Akwa Ibom state, where the men were kidnapped, said: "All seven have been released. They are all in good health. They have already been taken to Port Harcourt where the state security services will release them to their various companies."
     
    He did not have any information on the terms of the men's release.

    Diplomatic and oil industry sources said a ransom had been demanded and negotiations took place between the kidnappers, the local authorities and the men's employers, four contractor companies based in Britain and the United States.

    Romania's foreign ministry confirmed in a statement issued in Bucharest that Romanian oil worker Emil Neagu who was among the hostages had been freed and was in good health.

    Rumours false

    Paul Arinze, an ExxonMobil spokesman, said Nigerian government officials informed the company Saturday that all the hostages had been released: "We got a notification they have been released and they are all in good health."

    Arinze said rumours that one of the hostages had died were false.

    Hostage takings for ransom are common in the Niger Delta and local rights activists say companies usually pay up, fuelling the cycle.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.