Somali pirates free British couple

Sunday, November 14, 2010

MOGADISHU - A British couple held captive by pirates in Somalia for more than a year was released Sunday, a media report said.

Pirates had captured them after attacking their yacht off the Somalia coast, Xinhua reported.

The couple - Paul and Rachel Chandler - were set free after long negotiations with their captors, and have now reached the central Somali town of Addado, said Abdi Mohamed Helmi Hangul, a doctor who had treated the couple while in captivity and who also took part in efforts to release them.

“They are fine and are now talking to local elders and the administration and will soon leave the town for Mogadishu, from where they will fly to Nairobi,” Hangul told Xinhua.

Addado town is under the control of a local autonomy and is a relatively peaceful part of Somalia.

It was, however, not immediately clear if a ransom had been paid for the Chandlers’ release.

Pirates had been demanding hefty ransom for setting free the elderly British couple since their ordeal began almost a year ago.

Recently a big payout - almost $10 million - was paid to a group of pirates for releasing a South Korean tanker and its crew.

Filed under: Accidents and Disasters

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