Kidnappers free 12 loggers in Senegal - army

2015-07-13 12:07

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Kolda - Twelve loggers who were kidnapped four days ago in the southern Casamance region of Senegal have been freed, an army source said on Sunday.

"We have just observed the return of the 12 forestry workers... in the village of Kolling" on Sunday, the source in the town of Kolda told AFP, requesting anonymity.

The kidnappers freed them in the Yassine forest, the source added, saying he had no more details on the conditions of their release.

They had at first demanded $17 000 from the sawmill where the loggers work before eventually lowering the ransom to just $744 000, an army source said on Friday.

In the end, a ransom of one million francs ($1 063 264) was paid, local sources said.

The freed hostages were to be debriefed by police.

Casamance has been the cradle of a low-level separatist insurgency since 1982, but there appeared to be no political motive for the kidnapping.

The unrest in Casamance, a strip of land separated from the rest of Senegal by Gambia, has claimed thousands of lives, although it has been less intense in recent years.

Read more on:    senegal  |  abductions  |  west africa

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