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German Hostages Freed in Yemen

The German Foreign Ministry has confirmed that kidnappers in Yemen have released a former government official and his family.

The ministry says former German deputy foreign minister Juergen Chrobog, his wife and three children were freed Saturday. Mr. Chrobog had previously served as ambassador to the United States.

A group of tribesmen seized them several days ago as the family toured eastern Yemen.

The kidnappers were demanding the government release several fellow tribe members being held on criminal charges.

Yemeni tribesmen have previously used kidnappings to try to force concessions from the government. The hostages are usually released unharmed, but four were killed during a botched rescue attempt in 1998.