ROME (AP) — Officials in Italy say an Italian aid worker who was kidnapped in Kenya in late 2018 has been freed.
Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte on Saturday hailed the release of Silvia Romano, who was a 23-year-old volunteer with the Italian-based humanitarian group Africa Milele when she was abducted in the coastal trading center of Chakama.
Conte tweeted: “Thanks to the men and women of the foreign intelligence services. Silvia, we’re waiting for you in Italy!”
Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, who also announced Romano’s liberation on Twitter, said, “The government never leaves anyone behind.”
After her kidnapping, Romano ended up in Somalia in the hands of an armed group linked to al-Shabab Islamic extremists, according to Italian news reports.
Al-Shabab militants have been blamed for a series of kidnappings of foreigners along Kenya’s coast. Kenya said the abductions of four foreigners prompted it to send troops to Somalia in 2011 to fight al-Shabab members.