Rescued German sisters fly home

The CL-60 aircraft carrying Anna and Lydia Hentschel flew from the special terminal of King Khaled International Airport (KKIA), while the escorts who were seeing them off shed tears of happiness.
“The girls on arrival at Dresdan airport were received by German officials, relatives, friends and a number of well-wishers on Wednesday,” said a top airline executive, who preferred to remain anonymous.
He added that Anna, 6, and Lydia, 4, who were treated at a Riyadh hospital, were given a tearful reception on arrival at the German airport.
The girls were healthy and would be reunited with relatives shortly, said the official, quoting a German Foreign Office statement.
“Four German officials and three family members accompanied the girls,” he added.
Medical tests showed that the girls were in good health, said German Ambassador Volkamar Wenzel, who refused to divulge more details about their repatriation.
The travel documents were collated by the German Embassy, while all necessary support was given by Saudi government agencies for their departure.
The girls were kidnapped a year ago with their parents and brother in the restive northern Yemeni province of Saada. The whereabouts of their remaining family members are unknown.
Two other German women, a South Korean woman teacher and a British engineer were also abducted at the same time on June 12, 2009.
The two Germans and the South Korean were found dead three days later.
Yemen’s government had blamed the northern rebels for the kidnapping, but rebel leaders denied any involvement.
Kidnappings of foreigners and Yemenis are common in the impoverished Arabian Peninsula country, where hostages are used by disgruntled tribesmen to press demands on authorities.

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