Fishermen freed years after capture by Somali pirates

A group of 26 hostages, all of whom were Asian crewmen of an Omani-flagged fishing vessel seized nearly five years ago by Somali pirates, have arrived in Kenya, with both tears and smiles marking the end of their ordeal. “Am so, so happy. Really am so, so happy. For UN, for Mr John (negotiator), for all the world. Thanks to you all,” one of the hostages, Mr Sudi Ahman, said on Sunday. The crew from China, the Philippines, Cambodia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Taiwan were seized when the Omani-flagged FV Naham 3 was hijacked by Somali pirates close to the Seychelles in March 2012, when pirate attacks were common in the area. Mr John Steed, coordinator of Hostage Support Partners (HSP) who helped negotiate their release, had gone to the Somali city of Galkayo to fetch the crew of the Naham 3, who had been held hostage for longer than any other crew except one. A retired British colonel, Mr Steed has made it his mission to rescue “forgotten hostages”: Poor fishermen with no insurance who are often left languishing the longest in the hands of pirates. Read the rest here 17:27

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