Dramatic Rescue Frees 19 Hostages Taken in Egypt

By Attalah, Lina | The Christian Science Monitor, September 3, 2008 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Dramatic Rescue Frees 19 Hostages Taken in Egypt


Attalah, Lina, The Christian Science Monitor


As the exact details of their rescue were still emerging, 11 foreign tourists and eight Egyptians walked free Monday afternoon following a 10-day hostage drama that took them from remotest Egypt, into Sudan, and possibly to Libya.

While the kidnappers' identities have yet to be released, at least six of them appear to have been killed in a raid that possibly involved Egyptian, Sudanese, and European forces. All of the abductees appeared to be in good health.

The rescue ends an ordeal that highlights new risks for adventure tourists in the western Egyptian desert due to the instability in neighboring Chad and Sudan.

"There does not seem to be a lot of information on organized crime in the region, although it is on the rise," says Abdul Moneim al-Said, head of the Egyptian al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies.

He says that the area is ripe for such kinds of crimes, given the ongoing conflicts, like the one in Darfur.

"It is a brand of violence that is similar to the on-going piracy in the horn of Africa and the Red Sea, and the increasing human trafficking. The desert in this area is wide. It's a wasteland that is convenient for such groups to organize themselves and the current failing states feed into those kinds of crimes," he says.

"This is the first time something like this has happened in the western desert in the past 25 years," says Hani Zaki, director of safari trips at EMCO Travel, one of the largest travel agencies in Egypt. "I do not take it as an indication of the desert not being safe. All trips organized here have security coverage represented in communication devices and security guides, and we usually use the Bedouin local communities for additional security."

Official sources so far have not given many specifics on the nature of the operation, but have acknowledged the use of force.

The Italian foreign minister, Franco Frattini, told La Stampa newspaper that "there was no planned raid." But rather, he said, an unspecified "meeting at a checkpoint" where gunshots erupted, presumably accidentally.

Egypt's foreign minister, Ahmad Maher, confirmed that the kidnapped group was released through an operation and that half of the kidnappers were killed in a mission that took place before dawn on Monday.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Dramatic Rescue Frees 19 Hostages Taken in Egypt
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?