President Donald Trump announced Monday that the United States has recovered Danny Burch, an American citizen who was being held hostage in Yemen for the last year and a half.
“It is my honor today to announce that Danny Burch, a United States citizen who has been held hostage in Yemen for 18 months, has been recovered and reunited with his wife and children,” Trump tweeted. “I appreciate the support of the United Arab Emirates in bringing Danny home. Danny’s recovery reflects the best of what the United States & its partners can accomplish.”
He continued, “We work every day to bring Americans home. We maintain constant and intensive diplomatic, intelligence, and law enforcement cooperation within the United States Government and with our foreign partners. Recovering American hostages is a priority of my Admin, and with Danny’s release, we have now secured freedom for 20 American captives since my election victory. We will not rest as we continue our work to bring the remaining American hostages back home!”
Burch, according to The New York Times, is an American oil worker who had spent years working as an engineer for a Yemeni oil company when he was abducted in Sanaa, Yemen, in 2017. According to Reuters, Iran-aligned Houthi forces were behind Burch’s kidnapping.
In a statement, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo applauded “the innumerable lines of effort from across the U.S. Government to enable this effort, to include the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs Robert O’Brien, U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi, and the Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell.”
“Today (Burch) is safe and secure, and is reunited with his wife and children,” the statement continued. “The family has asked for privacy as they recover from this ordeal. The safety and well-being of Americans remains one of the highest priorities of the Trump Administration.”
The announcement of Burch’s recovery came as the President traveled to Vietnam for his upcoming summit with North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un.
This story has been updated with additional developments Monday.
CNN’s Kylie Atwood contributed to this report.