Three Dutch soldiers held in Libya to be freed: TV

10th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

Three Dutch soldiers taken captive in Libya at the end of February in a botched attempt to evacuate two civilians by navy helicopter are to be freed, Libyan state television said on Thursday.

Allibya television said the soldiers entered Libya "illegally" and "will be handed over to officials from Greece and Malta."

Two Dutch pilots, one of them a woman, and a loadmaster were captured on February 27 in the northern coastal city of Sirte while trying to evacuate two civilians by navy helicopter with no backup on board.

On Tuesday Dutch Defence Minister Hans Hillen told parliament that a Dutch envoy had seen the three who "are being treated well" and efforts to release them were underway

"They are in good form, they have enough to eat and drink," the minister told MPs.

"Intensive diplomatic consultations are underway for their release," he said.

© 2011 AFP

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