Orissa: Paolo Bosusco released
Bhubaneshwar (AsiaNews) - Paolo Bosusco, the Italian kidnapped by the Naxalites in Orissa 29 days ago was released today in the village of Mohona, Gajapati district. The news was first
reported by the local NDTV television which had ongoing contacts with the Maoist group
thorughout the entire episode. His release was confirmed by the government and the Italian Embassy in Delhi.
Paol Bosusco's release came one day after an the audio message from the Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda, in which he says would free the hostages if the government of Orissa honored the agreement signed through mediators. In the message, the Naxalite leader said that the same Bosusco wanted the government to release a tribal woman before his release.
After weeks of haggling, the government had agreed to release 27 members of the Maoist group. These included Sushashree Panda, wife of the Maoist leader, released two days ago.
Paolo Bosusco, 54, a manager of a tourist agency familiar with the tribals of Orissa, and Claudio Colangelo, 61, a physician and volunteer operator, were captured on March 14 by a Maoist group who immediately made a series of conditions for their release to the Orissa government, which often ignores the fate of the tribals,.
On 24 March the situation was further complicated because another Maoist group kidnapped a Hindu nationalist politician, Jhina Hikaka, from the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), undermining the dialogue between government and the Naxalites. But on March 25 Claudio Colangelo, sick with malaria, was released.