Published: Sun, May 12, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

French troops rescue four hostages in Burkina Faso raid

French troops rescue four hostages in Burkina Faso raid

Several hostages, including one American, one South Korean, and two French people were freed in Burkina Faso overnight on Friday by French special forces.

They were rescued in the military operation by French special forces, in which two French soldiers died, on Friday.

The identity of the American and South Korean hostages was not immediately known, but they were both said to be women in a statement form the French presidency.

French President Emmanuel Macron expressed condolences for the two Commandos Marine killed in the operation., in the West African nation of Burkina Faso.

USA forces were not involved in the raid, French defense officials said at a news conference in Paris, but did provide some intelligence support, which helped French forces locate the hostages and their kidnappers.

No further details of the other two hostages liberated were given.

South Korea's Yonhap quoted the country's ministry of foreign affairs as saying the rescued South Korean national was in her 40s and has not been named.

"All our thoughts go to the families of the soldiers and to the soldiers who lost their lives to free us from this hell", said Lassimouillas in remarks to reporters.

France's military has freed four hostages who were being held in Burkina Faso.

The US military supported the French-led operation between Thursday and Friday in the northern Sahel region, according to two US officials.

Conversations with US and South Korean officials appeared to confirm that neither country had known about the hostages, Parly said. A military ceremony is planned for them next week.

Four kidnappers were also killed during the operation, while two others escaped.

The vehicle they were travelling in was found just across the border in Burkina Faso.

They were assisted by Burkina and Benin authorities and by the United States, which provided intelligence and support.

France's Operation Barkhane counts some 4,500 troops deployed in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad to help local forces battle jihadist groups.

The location of the raid confirmed that the French tourists had been kidnapped in Benin and taken over the nearby border into Burkina Faso, where terror groups have stepped up attacks in recent months.

"They told us that hostage-takings can be very long, but in the end, it worked out ok, but not for the soldiers", he said.

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