UN Envoy for Somalia welcomes release of hostages, calls for all remaining captives to be released
MOGADISHU, Somalia, June 9, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia (SRSG), Nicholas Kay welcomed the release today of 11 crew members of the ship MV Albedo, held hostage since November 2010, and called for all remaining captives still being held by Somali pirates to be released.
The 11 survivors of the MV Albedo crew were released to officials from the United Nations Office for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) inside Somalia and are now safely back in Kenya. The crew members from India, Iran, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka will be repatriated to their home countries over the coming days.
The MV Albedo had been held by armed Somali pirates since 12 November 2010. The ship sank close to the Somali coast in July 2013 due to mechanical failure and bad weather and the surviving crew had been held on shore by pirates since that time.
"For over three years the crew members and their families have suffered unimaginable distress. The crew underwent the trauma of piracy, their ship sinking and then being held ashore in very difficult conditions. I commend the efforts of UNODC colleagues and the local authorities, who facilitated their safe return today. While we have seen a significant reduction in piracy off the coast of Somalia in recent years, I remain deeply concerned that 38 other crew members are still being held hostage by Somali pirates. I call on those who continue to detain these crew members to release them without further delay so they can rejoin their families and loved ones” SRSG Kay said.