Morocco’s intelligence services have helped negotiate the release of German Development worker, Jorg Lange who had been held hostage in Mali since 2018.
German news outlet Spiegel reported the news on Friday, stressing that Lange’s kidnapping is “over after almost four and a half years… the Moroccan secret service in Mali mediated the release of the 63-year-old [worker].”
An authorized source confirmed the news to Morocco World News.
Lange was taken to the German embassy in Mali’s capital Bamako, the news outlet said, noting that the worker is in “good health.”
Lange, who worked for the humanitarian organization “HELP,” was kidnapped by a group of people on motorcycles in the Tillaberi region in Niger.
Converging reports suspected that ISIS was behind the kidnapping incident.
Morocco’s intelligence services are intensively active to
counter terrorism and organized crime.
The North African country works along with international security partners to halt terrorism in the Sahel, a region that many observers have described as a fertile ground for terrorist groups.
Sahel is “home to the world’s fastest-growing and most-deadly terrorist groups,” Morocco’s Foreign Affairs Minister Nasser Bourita said, stressing that the region accounted for 35% of global terrorism deaths in 2021.
Terrorism-caused fatalities rose in the region by over 1,000% between 2007-2021. During the same period, sub-Saharan Africa accounted for 48% of global terror deaths.
Kidnappings in the Sahel, particularly in Mali, have been making international headlines.
In 2020, converging reports made headlines on the kidnapping of an American man in Niger by gunmen on motorbikes.
In the same year, men on motorcycles killed six French workers, as well as a local guide and a driver 65 kilometers from Niamey.