Daily Trust (Abuja)

14 May 2012

Nigeria: Kano Kidnap - Germany Frees Jailed Muslim Woman

Germany has freed a Muslim woman jailed for aiding terrorists, in fulfillment of a condition set by kidnappers of a German construction worker in Kano for his release, Daily Trust learnt.

The woman, Filiz Gelowicz, who had converted to Islam and now bears the name Uma Saifullah Al-Ansariya, was released two weeks ago, according to an unsigned advertisement in the Daily Trust on Friday.

A source said the publication was authorised by the German embassy in Abuja.

German engineer Edgar Fritz Raupach was kidnapped January in Kano while working for Dantata & Sawoe Construction Company.

Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb released a video in March saying it was holding Raupach and that it wanted to swap him for Filiz Gelowicz. AQIM's video was posted by Mauritanian news agency ANI.

The publication announcing the release of the jailed German woman said, "100 days missing. Your sister Uma Saifullah Al-Ansariya (Filiz Gelowicz) is free since two weeks. When do you release our brother Edgar?? His friends are waiting for him..."

Edgar's photo is placed by the side of the text of the advert, which also contains a message in Arabic apparently meant to inform the kidnappers of the release of Gelowicz.

The German embassy could not be reached for comments yesterday.

When contacted, deputy spokesman for the Police force headquarters in Abuja, Frank Mba, said, "The case is under active investigation. The case file hasn't been closed and the matter is not to be disclosed."

After the kidnap of Raupach, security agents reportedly arrested five men, including a Mauritanian, in Kano over the abduction. But there has been no public statement on the arrests.

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