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Two Tunisian ex-hostages return home from Libya

Update: June, 30/2014 - 10:00

TRIPOLI — A Tunisian diplomat and a fellow embassy staffer who were abducted in Libya returned to Tunisia on a military plane early on Monday after being freed by their unknown captors.

Embassy employee Mohamed ben Sheikh kidnapped in Tripoli on March 21 and diplomat Al-Aroussi Kontassi, who was seized April 17, reunited with their families at a military barracks in a suburb of Tunis early on Monday.

Tunisia's President Moncef Marzouki, Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa and the head of the constituent assembly Mustapha ben Jaafar were also present at their arrival home.

"We were well treated (by the kidnappers). We did not know them," Ben Sheikh told journalists, adding that he was held in the same house as Kontassi but they did not speak to each other.

Kontassi also said they had not been mistreated but added "the conditions of our detention were very bad".

The pair have been taken to the military hospital in Tunis to be examined by doctors.

They were freed on Sunday through "the efforts of the Tunisian authorities in collaboration with the Libyan authorities whom we thank for their co-operation,"

Jomaa had said at a press conference earlier confirming that they had been freed.

Tunisian Foreign Minister Mongi Hamdi also spoke to the press saying no ransom had been paid, but declined to give details on the circumstances of their release. — AFP


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