How Robert Fowler was freed

Robert Fowler, the Canadian diplomat who, along with fellow Canadian Louis Guay, was held captive for four months by al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb before his release in April, has spoken to the CBC’s Peter Mansbridge. The conclusion of his two-part interview runs tonight. Fowler says he doesn’t know whether a ransom was paid or if prisoners changed hands to secure his freedom. He also says he would not reveal such information if he did know, so as not to affect future hostage negotiations.

In fact, as I reported in April, and despite Stephen Harper’s carefully-worded fudging on the subject, Fowler and Guay were released as part of a deal that involved a ransom paid by Germany and Switzerland, and the release of al-Qaeda prisoners by Mali and Niger. Details can be found here and here.

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.