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(CNN) - The element of surprise was lost in a failed U.S. military raid to rescue two hostages being held by al Qaeda militants in Yemen, a senior Defense Department official said Saturday.
American photojournalist Luke Somers and South African Pierre Korkie, a "respected teacher" who was to be released on Sunday, were fatally shot in the compound by a terrorist as the secret mission unfolded, a U.S. official said.
The relief group Gift of the Givers, which was helping secure Korkie's release, had recently informed his wife that "the waiting is almost over."