A French security agent kidnapped by Islamist insurgents in Somalia says he escaped his captors while they slept.
Marc Aubriere, who will be debriefed about his ordeal in France, said he walked for five hours until he reached the presidential palace in Mogadishu. He denied rumours he had killed three militants while fleeing. Aubriere was seized along with another agent from a hotel in the Somali capital on the 14th of July. The two were split up between hardline militant groups. The second hostage is still be held by the radical Al-Shabab faction. Both agents were in Somaila to train government forces. France says no money was paid for the release. Eric Chevalier a government spokesman said: “ France did not pay a ransom. This is very clear. He succeeded in escaping his kidnappers, and then getting to safety.’‘ Foreigners rarely venture to Somalia, which is one of the most deadly countries in the world. There has been no fully functioning government there since 1991 and Islamist militias with links to al Qaeda have been fighting a UN backed administration for the last two and a half years.