Two French soldiers and 17 Islamists were killed in a failed bid to free an intelligence officer captured in Somalia in 2009 who also perished, French President Francois Hollande said Saturday.
Handout still released on October 4, 2012 by the SITE Monitoring Service shows French secret agent Denis Allex held hostage in Somalia. Two French soldiers died and 17 "terrorists" were killed in a failed bid to free Allex in southern Somalia .
The overnight operation involving some 50 troops and at least five helicopters to free the intelligence agent, with the alias of Denis Allex, was launched by elite forces from the DGSE secret service, Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said.
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