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Yemen/release of Isabelle Prime

Published on August 19, 2015
Statement by M. François Hollande, President of the Republic (excerpts)

Paris, August 7, 2015

We’re very happy to welcome Isabelle Prime home to France. She was held for five months; she showed great courage. She was in Yemen for action that was a credit to France, because she was serving a country, her own first of all, but [also] a poor country, Yemen, and she wanted to be useful.

She was held for five months and it was possible for her to be released, and I want to pay tribute to everyone who contributed to this operation, this happy outcome: first of all, the Sultan of Oman, who cooperated with our services and managed to secure this release, and I want to pay tribute to him. I called him on the telephone just before meeting you, chère Isabelle, and I told him France is grateful for what Oman did.

I also want to congratulate the French services, who go unseen, who work behind the scenes and who enable us to get these results and this satisfaction after so many ordeals. I also want to say how admirable Isabelle’s family have been: admirable for their patience, admirable for their understanding, for not expressing what they were feeling, for doing everything to ensure she could be released and for trusting in the French services, the Foreign Ministry and the Foreign Ministry’s crisis unit, which, once again – because there have been several hostage releases since 2012 – did an absolutely outstanding job of supporting the families.

And finally, I want to say that France is a country with a government, a state that makes sure never to forget any of its nationals. Nevertheless, French nationals in areas at risk must take the utmost precautions. (…)./.

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