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Kidnapped Syrian nuns have been freed

The 13 nuns and three maids had been kidnapped in December

Published: Updated:

Thirteen nuns who were kidnapped last year from the historic Christian town of Maaloula in Syria were released Sunday, Reuters reported.

After being held for more than three months, they have now arrived to safety in Lebanon, Al Hadath channel reported.

The source said the nuns had been transferred to the Lebanese town of Arsal earlier in the week and were on their way to Syria on Sunday.

Transported

A source involved in the negotiations to free them told Agence France-Presse last week that the kidnappers were from a group belonging to the al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front led by a man called Abu Malek al-Kuwaiti.

The 13 nuns and three maids were kidnapped in December after Islamist fighters took the ancient quarter of the Christian town of Maaloula, north of Damascus.

They were then transported to the nearby town of Yabrud, a rebel stronghold the army is fighting to recapture.