Prime Minister Julia Gillard says all Australians will be pleased with news that Australian hostage Warren Rodwell has been released by his kidnappers in the Philippines.
Mr Rodwell was held hostage for nearly 15 months after being abducted from his home in the southern Philippines by armed members of the al-Qaeda-linked group Abu Sayyaf on December 5, 2011.
The Australian Government today confirmed he had been released by his captors on the island of Mindanao overnight.
“I think all Australians will be very pleased to hear this news and delighted on behalf of the Rodwell family,” Ms Gillard told reporters in northern NSW.
“Mr Rodwell’s family have shown a great deal of courage and stoicism in what has been a tremendously difficult situation.
“Our thoughts are with Warren Rodwell on this day of his release, and with his family.”
The Prime Minister praised the Philippines Government for securing Mr Rodwell’s release.
“They have done some remarkable work,” she said.She also paid tribute to Australian officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Australian Federal Police and Defence, “who have also worked hard on this matter”.
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