State TV reports that security forces in Burkina Faso have rescued 66 women and children kidnapped by suspected militant jihadists in the country’s north last week.
In an unprecedented mass abduction, the victims were abducted while collecting food in an insurgency-hit area.
Reports say he was found on a bus at a security checkpoint about 200 km (125 miles) south of where he was taken.
It is unclear whether their captors were also arrested.
On Friday night, state TV showed images of children and women, some with babies on their backs, addressing a military official and then boarding a bus at the airport.
“He found freedom after eight days in the hands of his captors,” says the reporter.
He is now in the capital Ouagadougou, where he is expected to be questioned to learn more about “his captors, his arrest and his escort,” a security source told the AFP news agency.
Two groups of women and children were abducted on January 12 and 13 in Arbinda district.
Militant jihadists have blocked roads in and out of the area. As food supplies are limited, there is severe hunger and the humanitarian situation is desperate.
Last month, Arbinda protesters stormed warehouses to get food and supplies.
Altogether Burkina Faso has been hit by a decade-long insurgency that has displaced nearly two million people.
The army took over last January, promising to end the attacks. A different group of officers staged a second coup in September after failing to end the uprising, but the violence continued.
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