Fears for captive SA yacht couple

2010-11-30 00:00

THERE is still no word of the Durban couple captured by Somali pirates about three weeks ago and South African authorities say they are concerned because the pirates have not made any contact yet about the two.

A third person, a yachtsman who is a friend of the couple, is back in the country after resisting capture by the pirates.

Department of International Relations and Co-operation spokesperson Saul Kgomotso Molobi said yesterday the department is increasingly worried that Bruno Pelizzari and his partner, Deborah Calitz, have not been found and that there has been no communication from the pirates regarding their release.

“We are still optimists and believe that they are still alive, but we have not heard from their captors,” Molobi told The Witness in a telephone interview yesterday.

He said they had hoped the captors would make some contact with the government or demand ra ansom for the two, but it was all quiet.

Molobi said the government is in constant talks with its counterparts in Somalia.

Pelizzari and Calitz were captured by pirates when they were aboard the yacht SY Chizil with their friend, Peter Eldridge, from Richards Bay.

Eldridge refused to co-operate with the pirates and was rescued by European Union naval forces off the coast of Somalia and has arrived home safely.

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