An international peacekeeper who was
abducted by gunmen in the Sinai Peninsula has been released, an
Egyptian security official said Friday.
The man, a US national, was abducted Thursday by gunmen seeking the release of their jailed relatives, the official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
The peacekeeper was released hours later after local tribal chiefs intervened.
"He has been handed over to police," the official said.
Around 1,000 multi-national peacekeepers are positioned in Sinai to monitor Egyptian-Israeli border under a 1979 peace treaty between the two countries.
The remote and rugged desert peninsula has suffered from security problems since president Hosny Mubarak was toppled in February 2011.
In August, the army launched a massive campaign in Sinai against radical Islamists suspected of killing 16 Egyptian soldiers near the border with the Gaza Strip.
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