UN worker released in Darfur after 3 months in captivity
Kidnappers in Darfur yesterday morning released a UN logistician, Patrick Noonan, who had been held in captivity for 85 days. Intense negotiations leading to his release involved the British Embassy in Khartoum, the Sudan Foreign Ministry, local authorities, and the native administration in South Darfur.
Noonan, a Northern Irish working for the UN World Food Programme, was initially captured at gunpoint on 5 March. His driver, a Sudanese, was released the same day, west of Kass in South Darfur.
Radio Dabanga learnt that the captive was yesterday handed over to the native administration in an area near Nyala, who in turn handed him over to local authorities in Nyala.
Noonan was then transported to Khartoum by plane yesterday afternoon. The freed aid worker showed signs of exhaustion.
Another Irish aid worker had been targeted in Darfur in 2009. Sharon Commins, who was working for GOAL, was held more than 100 days along with a Ugandan colleague also working for GOAL.
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