Swiss hostage released after year in captivity in Yemen

BERN, SWITZERLAND – A 33-year-old Swiss teacher of languages who was kidnapped in March 2012 by armed militants at her home in Yemen has been released. No ransom was paid and it appears likely that her release came about through long negotiations with various tribal groups.

The Swiss Department of Foreign Affairs said Thursday in a statement: “The woman, who was kidnapped on 13 March 2012 in Yemen, has been released on 27 February 2013.  The Swiss MFA expresses its deepest gratitude to the State of Qatar in particular to His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the Emir of the State of Qatar, and His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani, the Heir Apparent, for all the efforts in negotiating the release of the hostage. According to the circumstances, she is in good health. She is currently being taken care of by representatives of the Swiss MFA and will return to Switzerland as soon as possible.”

RTS public broadcasting notes that some 200 kidnappings have taken place in Yemen in the past 15 years.