Middle East

Saudi hostage freed in Yemen: ministry

Army soldiers inspect a car at a checkpoint in Sanaa June 26, 2014. (REUTERS/Mohamed al-Sayaghi)

RIYADH: A Saudi citizen kidnapped in Yemen has been freed by his abductors and returned home on Sunday after "huge efforts" to secure his release, the Foreign Ministry said.

In a statement carried by the official SPA news agency, the ministry gave no details on when Ayedh bin Jibran Mikali had been abducted or who had kidnapped him.

It said only that he was released "following huge and painful efforts."

Saudi media reported that Mikali had been abducted by a Yemeni tribe, but gave no further details.

Hundreds of foreigners have been kidnapped in Yemen over the past two decades by tribesmen who use them as bargaining chips in disputes with the Sanaa government.

Nearly all have been freed unharmed.

In recent years, however, there has been a growing number of abductions by Al-Qaeda militants, with a Saudi diplomat thought to be among their hostages.





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