News

    Somali Pirates Free British Hostage Held Since September

    British hostage Judith Tebbutt, is pictured at a house in Adado, central Somalia, before her departure, March 21, 2012.
    British hostage Judith Tebbutt, is pictured at a house in Adado, central Somalia, before her departure, March 21, 2012.
    Gabe Joselow

    A British woman held hostage for six months inside Somalia has been freed after a ransom was paid to her captors.  The British Foreign Office said Wednesday she was being taken to a safe place.  

    Somali gunmen seized Judith Tebbutt, 56, in September last year from a secluded seaside resort in Kenya near the Somali border.

    Kenyan police say her husband, David, was shot dead during the attack when he tried to resist. Judith, who relies on hearing aids, was then taken away in a speedboat by her kidnappers and was believed to be held captive in central Somalia.

    But her long ordeal finally ended on Wednesday.

    Media reports say Somali pirates surrendered Tebbutt to local authorities after receiving a ransom payment.

    A spokesman for Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, Omar Osman, said the prime minister had been putting pressure on local groups to release Tebbutt, but said the TFG could only do so much with its limited political capacity.

    “We hope that the international will realize that helping Somali institutions to rebuild is the only way out of the morass we are in in Somalia, and if we were ever to control the whole country we would not have all these people taken hostage to our territory,” he said.

    A disabled French woman was kidnapped soon after Tebbutt in a similar attack in a nearby resort by suspected Somali gunmen. She died while being held hostage in Somalia.

    Somali kidnappers also are believed to still be holding two Spanish aid workers abducted in October from the Dadaab refugee camps in northeastern Kenya.

    The kidnappings were part of a spate of cross-border attacks last year that Kenya used as justification for a full-scaled military operation in Somalia targeting al-Shabab militants.

    Al-Shabab has denied involvement in the kidnappings. Security analysts have said the abductions are more likely the work of pirates and other criminal gangs seeking money.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese Americans for Trump Going Against National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese Americans for Trump Going Against National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora