Four foreigners, including three Italians, who had been abducted by pirates off the coast of Nigeria, have been released, police say.
“I can confirm that the kidnapped victims have been released. We got the information this morning that the victims have been freed by their captors,” said Fidelis Odunna, police spokesperson in the southern Nigerian state of Bayelsa, on Thursday.
“What we don't know is the circumstances which they were freed. Whether ransom was paid or not is what we don't know. But it is confirmed that they have been set free,” he added, saying that they were released in the town of Yenagoa.
Hours later, Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi di Sant'Agata confirmed the release of the three Italians saying that the “seamen… will soon return to Italy.”
The Italian sailors and the other foreign national, whose identity has not been disclosed, had been kidnapped about 74 kilometers (46 miles) off the coast of Bayelsa on December 13, 2012.