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UPDATE: Released Jordanian ambassador says he was not tortured in Libya

AFP , Tuesday 13 May 2014
Fawaz Aitan
Jordanian ambassador Fawaz Aitan (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Jordan freed a jihadist held over a plot to attack Amman's airport in exchange for the release of its ambassador to Libya who was kidnapped last month, a minister said Tuesday.

A government minister told AFP that ambassador Fawaz Aitan had been released, with the announcement coming just days after Libya said it had ratified an extradition agreement with Jordan.

A plane carrying Aitan touched down at Marka military airport in Amman, and he was greeted by relatives and officials led by Prince Faisal bin Hussein, the brother of King Abdullah II.

"They (the kidnappers) treated me in a civilised and humane manner," Aitan told reporters after stepping off the aircraft, looking healthy but tired.

"I was not tortured," Aitan said according to Ahram.

Masked gunmen kidnapped the ambassador in mid-April as he was being driven to work in the Libyan capital. They shot at his car and wounded his driver.

There was no claim of responsibility, but Libyan sources said the abductors had demanded the release of Mohammed Saeed al-Darsi, a Libyan jihadist jailed in Jordan.

Darsi was convicted in 2007 on terrorism charges and sentenced to life in prison. He was also found guilty of possessing explosives and involvement in planning to bomb Amman's international airport.

Aitan said his abductors were relatives of Darsi.

The envoy was handed over to the Jordanian authorities in Libya at 0300 GMT, Jordanian Parliamentary Affairs Minister Khaled al-Kalaldah told AFP.

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