Two US citizens who were held by Houthi rebels in Yemen have been released, Omani state media reported.
The release may have occurred as part of a prisoner exchange, given that Oman sent planes to Sana’a to return 250 Yemeni citizens from Oman and other countries.
“At the direction of Sultan Heissam bin Tariq, the relevant authorities in the Sultanate contacted the authorities in Sana’a, who agreed to release the Americans and hand them over to the Sultanate before they go home,” Omani television said.
The United States welcomed the release of two of its citizens, Sandra Loli and Mikael Gidada, from the custody of the Houthi rebels, noting that the remains of Bilal Fatin would also be repatriated. This was announced by the US National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien.
Loli, a humanitarian worker, was imprisoned for three years, and Gidad, a businessman, for one year.
O’Brien thanked the Sultan of Oman, Heisam bin Tariq al-Said and the King of Saudi Arabia, Salman for their help in freeing US citizens.
“President Donald Trump continues to prioritize the release and repatriation of Americans who have been held hostage abroad,” he said.