In The Media

Oman secures release of Australian hostage in Yemen

National Yemen
Written by Staff

MUSCAT // The Omani government said it had secured the release of an Australian from Yemen on Wednesday following negotiations through tribal mediators.

The foreign ministry did not name the man and it was not clear if he was Craig McAllister, who was abducted in the rebel-held Yemeni capital Sanaa in September.

Muscat said it had acted at the request of the Australian authorities.

Oman has mediated the release of several western hostages in Yemen, including an American in November.

Mr McAllister appeared in a 12-second video in January urging his government to meet the demands of his unidentified kidnappers.

In a similar video released in October he said he had been working in Yemen as a football coach and that his captors were seeking money.

The Iran-backed Houthi rebels overran Sanaa in September 2014, forcing president Abdrabu Mansur Hadi and his government to flee the capital.

Dozens of foreigners have been taken hostage in Yemen over the past two decades, mostly by tribesmen as bargaining chips to secure concessions from the government.

Almost all have been freed unharmed.

But more recently Al Qaeda in Yemen has abducted a number of westerners.

In December 2014, US journalist Luke Somers and South African teacher Pierre Korkie died during a failed attempt by US commandos to rescue them from an Al Qaeda hideout.

* Agence France-Presse

Original Article