Tribal kidnappers release 2 foreigners in S. Yemen: ministry

Tribal kidnappers release 2 foreigners in S. Yemen: ministry
# 29 August 2010 00:22 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. Armed tribesmen released two foreign workers on Saturday, a day after they kidnapped them in southern Yemen to press for the release of one of their fellows detained, the Interior Ministry said, APA reports quoting Xinhua News Agency.

"Governor of southern province of Abyan, Ahmed al-Maisery, assigned the councilman of al-Mahfad district to convince the tribal kidnappers to release the foreign pair -- a Turkish and a Syrian, who worked with a foreign investment company," the ministry said in a statement posted on its website.

It said the councilman succeeded in helping the release and the two foreign workers have later arrived at the home of the governor safely.

Earlier, a provincial security official told Xinhua that Yemeni armed tribesmen in Abyan kidnapped two foreign workers late on Friday to press for the release of one of their fellows detained on charges of having ties with al-Qaida.

"The kidnapped pair, a Turkish and a Syrian, were taken by the kidnappers to a nearby region in al-Mahfad district of Abyan," the official said on condition of anonymity, adding that "a tribal and security mediation has been launched to seek the release of the abducted."

In Yemen, kidnapping foreigners became a common practice as tribesmen in the lawless areas often resort to abducting tourists or foreign workers in a bid to pressure the government to meet their demands.

Abyan province is thought to be a stronghold of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula after it has witnessed a series of deadly attacks allegedly carried out by the regional terrorist wing since earlier this year, leaving dozens of security personnel dead or injured.

The impoverished Arab country has intensified security operations and air raids against terrorist groups, after the Yemen- based al-Qaida wing claimed responsibility for a failed Christmas Day attempt to blow up a U.S. passenger plane bound for Detroit last year.