April 19 - French President Francois Hollande welcomes news of the release of a family of seven taken hostage in Cameroon in February. Lily Grimes reports.
A French family of seven, including four children, has been released in Cameroon, ending two months of captivity by Nigerian Islamist militants. France's President Francois Hollande said secret talks had been taking place to secure the release although he denied any ransom had been paid. (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRENCH PRESIDENT, FRANCOIS HOLLANDE, SAYING: "The hostages who were captured in Cameroon and taken to Nigeria, the Moulin-Fournier family, have been freed. I want to thank all the authorities who contributed to this good news for the family, and enormous relief for the French people.'' The family was snatched in February by armed men on motorbikes while on holiday near the Waza National Park six miles from the Nigerian border. Gunmen claiming to be from Islamist militant group Boko Haram released videos of the family in March, threatening to kill them unless Nigeria and Cameroon released Muslim militants held in detention. Cameroon denied it was holding any militants and it's unclear if any of the group's demands have been met. Mostly Muslim northern Cameroon is considered to be within the operational sphere of Islamist militants such as Boko Haram.