SA didn’t pay ransom for Durban couple

2012-06-21 14:22
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

SA hostages freed

A South African couple taken hostage by Somali pirates have been freed. See all the pictures just hours after they were released by their captors.

Johannesburg - South Africa thanked the Italian and Somali authorities on Thursday for the safe return of a local couple held captive by pirates for 20 months.

"The couple was released unharmed and is receiving consular support from the South African mission to Somalia, which is based in Nairobi, Kenya," said international relations spokesperson Nelson Kgwete.

"Arrangements are being made for the return of the couple to South Africa."

He said South Africa's ambassador to Somalia, Ndumiso Ntshinga, was in contact with the couple, Deborah Calitz and Bruno Pelizzari.

Somali authorities had confirmed that they were in good health and eager to be reunited with their loved ones.

The two were kidnapped in October 2010 from a yacht off the south-eastern coast of Africa. Their pirate captors originally demanded a ransom of $10m.

Kgwete told eNews that it was the "policy of the South African government not to pay ransoms" but refused to state whether or not Italy paid a ransom.

The Associated Press reported that the couple was among the longest-held hostages by pirates.

At a press conference in Somalia's presidential palace in Mogadishu, Calitz and Pelizzari smiled but appeared exhausted, AP said.

"We are very happy to get our freedom again," Calitz said.

"We are so happy today and to join our families again."

Somalia's defence minister Hussein Arab Isse credited Somali security forces with helping secure the couple's release.

Isse said the couple were freed in a raid in a joint operation conducted by Somali security forces and the army. Sources said the operation took place in the lower Shabelle region of southern Somalia.

- SAPA
Read more on:    bruno pelizzari  |  deborah calitz  |  somalia  |  east africa  |  somali pirates  |  pirates  |  good news
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
95 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

This is what South Africans Googled in 2014!

Find out who and what South Africans were most curious about in 2014!

 
 

I love summer.24

This hilarious song is your new holiday anthem
The world's least visited destination is breathtaking!
LOL treadmill fail!
Google’s top searches of 2014

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be emotionally defensive or reserved today. You need to step up today as there may be extra responsibilities to deal with....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.