British aid worker Frans Barnard has been released by gunmen in Somalia after six days, according to Save the Children
Somali gunmen have released a British aid worker kidnapped last week while working for Save the Children.
The aid worker, named as Zimbabwe-born Frans Barnard, was freed after six days in captivity after tribal elders negotiated with his captors, Save the Children has confirmed.
The charity’s chief executive, Justin Forsyth, told BBC radio that no money was paid to secure Barnard’s release. ‘I can categorically say that we paid no ransom at all,’ he said.
‘He is well, he is in good spirits and he is on his way to a place of safety. He has been looked after by the kidnappers.’
Barnard was kidnapped by gunmen along with a Somali aid worker from a guesthouse compound in the town of Adado last Thursday. The Somali national was released soon afterwards.
Save the Children is an international organization based in the UK and has been working in Somalia for more than 40 years, with a focus on improving access to food, basic healthcare and education.
The group said it had been assessing the feasibility of starting up a humanitarian program to help malnourished and sick children and their families in the area.
Somalia has not had a stable government since 1991, and fighting between rebels and government troops has escalated the humanitarian crisis in the famine-ravaged country.