CHR Comment: Those released seem to be persons who could not easily be held in captivity (sick and elderly). The captors seek millions of dollars in ransom money. Terrorist groups use these methods as a form of fundraising.
The Barefoot Trinitarians were committed to ransoming Christians held captive by non-Christians, which was apparently a significant problem in the era of their founding.
Looking forward to learning more about these documents. None of the news stories I’ve seen tell anything about the actual documents other than one has a signature by Michelangelo. One wonders how many documents are in the Vatican archives waiting to be discovered.