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Foreign aid workers kidnapped from Kenya released in Somalia

The four aid workers, from the Norwegian Refugee Council, were kidnapped at the Dadaab refugee camp near Kenya's border with Somalia.

aid workers released somalia 2012 07 02Enlarge
Kenyan security forces near Liboi, Kenya's border town with Somalia. Four foreign aid workers kidnapped in the Dadaab refugee camp were released in Somalia and are now with the Kenyan army, officials said July 2, 2012. (Tony Karumba/AFP/Getty Images)

Four foreign aid workers kidnapped from Kenya's Dadaab refugee camp, near the border with Somalia, have been released.

The aid workers were freed in southern Somalia after a brief gunfight, and are now safe with the Kenyan army, officials told Agence France-Presse. One was shot in the leg, but they are otherwise unharmed.

A Somali military commander said they were freed in a "overnight rescue operation" that involved both Kenyan and Somali troops, Reuters reported.

The foreigners, from Canada, Norway, Pakistan and the Philippines, worked for the Norwegian Refugee Council. 

A Kenyan driver was killed in the attack and kidnapping last Friday.

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A number of aid workers have been abducted from Dadaab in the last year, and many organizations have pulled out of the camp, which houses more than 450,000 Somalis.

At least 15 people were killed Sunday morning in grenade and gunfire attacks on two churches in the northern Kenyan town of Garissa, about 60 miles from the Dadaab camp.

Garissa, capital of Kenya's North Eastern Province, is home to a military base used to deploy ground forces to Somalia to fight al Shabaab Islamist insurgents.

Several parts of Kenya have been hit by blasts and grenade attacks since the military operation began last October.

More from GlobalPost: Kenya churches hit by deadly attacks

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/kenya/120702/aid-workers-kidnapped-from-kenya-released-in-somalia