Tuesday, August 20, 2013

No Ransom, No Release for Hostages of Somali Pirates

Suspected pirates keep their hands in the air as directed by sailors aboard
the guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) (not shown), in the Gulf
of Aden, February 11, 2009.

NAIROBI — In recent months the number of pirate attacks along Somalia’s coast has dropped, but an estimated 97 seafarers remain in the hands of pirates.  Many of these hostages are uninsured and negotiations for their release have come to a standstill.

For two years and nine months now, Somali pirates have held the crewmembers of the Malaysian flagged MV Albedo. The hostages were confined to the vessel until it sank last month, when four of the fifteen men went missing.

...John Steed, a counter piracy expert who now runs a hostage support program, has been working for their release.  

"There is no ransom negotiation going on whatsoever," Steed said. "So our job is to try and persuade the pirates that there is nothing to be gained from this, that they should be released on humanitarian grounds."

Rest the rest of the article from Voice of America News [here].