Crime and Court news / Foreign relations

Italian hostage in Syria released ‘after prisoner exchange’

Prisoner swaps have been common during the Syrian civil war.

Prisoner swaps have been common during the Syrian civil war.

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the release of Mr. Mario Belluomo, the Italian engineer kidnapped in Syria on December, as anticipated by the Russian Government.

Mr. Belluomo is already back in Italy.

Apparently it was Russia, the main international ally of the Syrian embattled Government, to negotiate the release of Mr. Belluomo and of two Russian citizens, persuading Damascus to release three opposition prisoners in exchange.

The Italian Government recognized the Syrian armed opposition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people. It was feared that, after such a recognition, the Syrian Government would not cooperate in order to obtain Mr. Belluomo’s release.

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