German hostage killed in Nigeria


A German man held hostage in northern Nigeria by a group linked to al-Qaeda was killed today during an attempt by Nigerian forces to rescue him, according to army and security sources.

Edgar Fritz Raupach was seized in the north's main city Kano in January.

A group claiming to be al-Qaeda's North African wing said in March it was holding him and demanded the release of a Muslim woman imprisoned in Germany in exchange for his freedom.

Kidnapping foreigners has become a common tactic of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which operates out of Nigeria's neighbour Niger, as well as in Mali, Algeria and Mauritania.

Officials believe it also has links with Nigerian militants.

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