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American hostage Jeffery Woodke free of captivity in Africa

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An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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Remark

An American assist employee who was taken captive by militants in West Africa greater than six years in the past has been freed, his household and the Biden administration stated Monday, however officers shared little about his years in captivity or the identification of the group that held him.

Jeffery Woodke, a Christian assist employee, was kidnapped in Niger in 2016 and believed to have been later taken to Mali. He’s present process a medical analysis in Niamey, the capital of Niger, then will return dwelling to be reunited along with his household, stated Bob Klamer, a spokesman for the Woodke household.

“I’m gratified & relieved to see the discharge of U.S. hostage Jeff Woodke after over 6 years in captivity,” White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.

Woodke’s wife, Els Woodke, spoke to her husband Monday. “He was in nice spirits and thrilled to be free,” she stated. She expressed her “profound because of the many individuals in governments and others around the globe who’ve labored so arduous to see this outcome.”

Sullivan thanked the federal government of Niger for serving to safe Woodke’s return. Secretary of State Antony Blinken simply returned from Niger on Friday, within the first go to to the West African nation by a sitting secretary of state. Blinken reaffirmed the US’ curiosity in securing Woodke’s launch, stated a senior administration official, however no ransom or concessions got. No direct negotiations have been held between the U.S. authorities and the group that held him, stated the official, who spoke to reporters on the situation of anonymity given the sensitivity surrounding the long-sought launch.

The official declined to determine the group that held Woodke however famous that his seize occurred on account of an “overlapping and intersecting community in that a part of West Africa — working in an space that features Mali and Burkina Faso — who see kidnapping and hostage-taking as a part of their enterprise mannequin, frankly, and as a income and help.”

Armed males appeared at Woodke’s dwelling in Abalak in October 2016, killing his guards and abducting him, in keeping with his household. The California native had spent about three many years residing part- or full-time in Niger, the place his work included missionary exercise and the development of wells and faculties, his spouse stated.

In her assertion, she praised “God for answering the prayers of Christians all over the place who’ve prayed for this consequence.” She stated U.S. officers knowledgeable her Monday morning that her husband had been freed.

In 2021, Els Woodke stated she believed her husband had initially been held by the Islamic State within the Higher Sahara and that his switch occurred after the dying of that group’s chief, Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, in a French military operation. The group can be believed to have been concerned in an assault that resulted within the deaths of four American troops in 2017.

In her assertion Monday, Els Woodke stated the governments of Niger and the US “have lengthy suspected that jihadists have held Jeff within the Sahel since then.”

Olivier Dubois, a French journalist who was abducted by Islamist militants in Mali in April 2021, was additionally launched Monday in Niger, according to Reporters With out Borders, a Paris-based press freedom watchdog. Dubois was kidnapped within the northeastern metropolis of Gao by an al-Qaeda-linked affiliate referred to as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM) whereas he was reporting. Christophe Deloire, secretary common of Reporters With out Borders, stated he felt “immense reduction” after the discharge of Dubois, who had been held for 711 days.

French President Emmanuel Macron stated Monday that he spoke with Dubois after his launch. “He’s in good well being,” Macron stated in a press release. “Immense reduction for the Nation, for his relations and fellow journalists. Nice gratitude to Niger for this launch.”

Information of Woodke’s launch was reported earlier by the New York Occasions.

Missy Ryan in Washington and Rachel Chason in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



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