Source Pravda.Ru

Somali government talks with kidnappers

Somalia’s main Islamist groups agreed to each hold one of the two French security advisers abducted in the country earlier this week, a police official said.

The al-Shabaab militia and the Hisb-ul-Islam movement split the men up in order to both benefit from a possible ransom, Lieutenant-Colonel Muhideen Ahmed said in an interview today from the capital, Mogadishu, reports Bloomberg.

Minister Mohammed Ali Ibrahim told France 24 television that Somalia's prime minister was able to talk with one of the hostages "to reassure him." He says the two men have been split up but apparently are in good health.

The minister said Thursday the hostages were in Mogadishu but being held by two separate groups - the Al Shabaab party and the Hizbul Islam party. Both are among Islamist groups fighting the government.

The minister said "we are negotiating with them" to obtain freedom for the hostages, informs CKTB.

According to Associated Press Social Affairs Minister Mohammed Ali Ibrahim said the two men, abducted Tuesday from their hotel, had been separated and were being held by two different groups. However, he told France 24 television that Somalia's prime minister was able to talk with one of the hostages "to reassure him" and that both men are apparently in good health.

"We are in negotiations with them to obtain their freedom," he said.