"I am relieved and delighted that Alan Johnston has finally been freed today after four long months in captivity. The abduction of this respected journalist, who was and remains committed to informing the world public about the situation in the Gaza Strip, appalled us all. We did not once forget his plight, and kept on calling urgently for his immediate release. I am very glad that months of fear and uncertainty are now over for Alan Johnston, his family and colleagues at the BBC.
I furthermore hope that the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who was kidnapped by Palestinians over a year ago, will finally be released and may return unharmed to his family in Israel. The Federal Government reiterates its demand for all abductees to be released without delay."