Jordanian peacekeepers kidnapped in Darfur freed

KHARTOUM Wed Jan 2, 2013 5:17pm GMT

Jordanian peacekeepers Hassan Mizawoda and Haleem Al Sarhaan arrive at Khartoum Airport, January 2, 2013, after 136 days of captivity in Sudan's Darfur region according to local media. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

Jordanian peacekeepers Hassan Mizawoda and Haleem Al Sarhaan arrive at Khartoum Airport, January 2, 2013, after 136 days of captivity in Sudan's Darfur region according to local media.

Credit: Reuters/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

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KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Two Jordanian peacekeepers abducted in Darfur four months ago were freed on Wednesday, the international force overseeing the conflict-torn region said.

A plane carrying the pair landed at Khartoum airport, the force led by the African Union and United Nations said in a statement that did not identify the kidnappers or say where the soldiers were released and whether a ransom was paid.

Conflict has raged in Darfur since insurgents took up arms against Sudanese government forces in 2003, complaining that Khartoum had neglected the vast, arid region.

The U.N. says as many as 300,000 people may have died in the fighting. Sudan's government has put the death toll at about 10,000.

The two Jordanians were kidnapped in Kabkabiya in northern Darfur in August. Both men were in good health after their release, the international force said.

(Reporting by Khalid Abdelaziz and Ulf Laessing; Editing by Tom Pfeiffer)

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