Italian hostage released in Syria: Government

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Rome, April 6 (IANS/AKI) A 59-year-old Italian who was kidnapped in Syria three years ago has been freed and will return to his homeland “in a few hours”, Italian premier Giuseppe Conte’s office said in a statement on Friday.

“Following complex and delicate intelligence gathering, investigative and diplomatic activity involving synergies, today we managed to obtain the release of Sergio Zanotti, who was kidnapped in Syria in April 2016,” said the statement.

“He will be back in Italy in a few hours,” the statement added.

Zanotti, a businessman from Brescia, appeared in several videos during his captivity. Sporting a long grey beard and unkempt grey hair, urging the Italian government to save him from execution flanked by masked gunmen.

According to Zanotti’s ex-wife, he had vanished in southern Turkey near the Syrian border.

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