(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) A South Korean trade official who was abducted by Libyan gunmen earlier this week was released unharmed on Thursday after Libyan forces arrested the kidnappers, Seoul's foreign ministry said.
Han Seok-woo, the chief of the Libya unit of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), was sent to the South Korean Embassy in Libya at around 4:15 a.m
(Korean time) after being rescued from the gunmen who had kidnapped Han on his way home in Tripoli on Monday, (Yonhap) news agency reported
"Han is in good health and was handed over to the South Korean Embassy," the ministry said in a statement
The four kidnappers were arrested in Tripoli by Libyan security authorities and found to be members of an armed group, according to the statement
At the repeated requests by the South Korean government, the Libyan authorities used both persuasion and threats in locating and capturing the kidnappers who surrendered without a major clash, a ministry official said
The kidnapping was not specifically targeted at Han or any other Koreans, and the government did not pay any ransom in rescuing the KOTRA official, the official said
He, however, refused to discuss details of the arrest, citing confidentiality needed in dealing with abduction cases in the future
"Our government appreciates the Libyan government's close cooperation in rescuing Han and extends its gratitude," the ministry statement said
Seoul had been striving to win the safe release of Han without paying ransom to the kidnappers, it noted
It has not been determined yet when Han will return to South Korea, added the ministry.