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Last Updated: Friday, 11 May 2007, 16:10 GMT 17:10 UK
Kidnapped French aid worker freed
The two French hostages kidnapped in Nimroz province
The two French hostages have now been released
A French aid worker kidnapped by the Taleban in Afghanistan on 3 April has been released in Kandahar province, a Taleban spokesman has told the BBC.

The Red Cross has confirmed the news, saying Eric Damfreville was handed over to them on Friday evening.

There is no news on the fate of three Afghans also abducted by the Taleban in south-west Afghanistan.

A French woman, Celine Cordelier, who was kidnapped at the same time, was released on 28 April.

The aid workers were employed by the French group Terre d'enfance (A World for our Children).

Map

Taleban spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told the BBC Pashto service that the French man was freed in the Maiwand district of Kandahar, the same area where Ms Cordelier was freed.

Mr Yousuf said the Taleban had freed Mr Damfreville because French President-elect Nicolas Sarkozy intended to withdraw French troops from Afghanistan.

Mr Sarkozy indicated in April he was not committed to keeping French troops in Afghanistan.

"It was certainly useful that we sent (the troops) in the context of the war against terrorism, but the long-term presence of French troops in that part of the world does not seem to me to be decisive," he said, Reuters news agency reports.

The group of five were abducted in Nimroz province.




VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Red Cross gives details of Mr Damfreville's release



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