First photos emerge of USA tourist after her release in Uganda

Costa Mesa Woman Kidnapped in Uganda Found Alive: Wildlife Officials

American tourist Kimberly Sue Endicott and her tour guide, who were abducted in Uganda's Queen Elizabeth National Park on Tuesday, have been rescued by security forces, a Ugandan government spokesperson said Sunday.

Ugandan police announced on Sunday that they have rescued an American woman and her driver after the two were kidnapped last week while on safari.

Check back for updates on this developing story.

Their kidnappers had demanded a US$500,000 ransom for their release, but it was not known if any money was paid or if the abductors had been arrested.

Authorities gave no more details.

Joint Security teams comprising of the Tourism Police, the Uganda People's Defence Forces (UPDF) and Uganda Wildlife Authority rangers were dispatched to pursue the gunmen rescue the victims.

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Martin Julius and his wife Barbel were said to be on a Wild Frontiers Safari tour and alerted a manager when they were abandoned in the ambush.

Queen Elizabeth National Park, one of the East African nation's most popular wildlife reserves, runs along the border with conflict-wracked regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Uganda recorded a surge in kidnapping cases past year, prompting street protests by activists who said security agencies weren't doing enough to protect residents.

The snaps show Endicott and Jean-Paul Mirgene Remezo shaking hands with Paul Goldring, the director of Wild Frontiers, the tourist group that paid a ransom to get the pair released, according to CBS News.

Queen Elizabeth park is about 150 kilometres (90 miles) north of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, famous for gorilla trekking. It borders the famous Virunga national park, the oldest in Africa.

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