Wednesday, 24 September 2014

German journalist freed in Somalia after 2 1/2 years

A German-American journalist held hostage in Somalia for 2-1/2 years was freed on Tuesday, according to German and Somali authorities and his former employer, Spiegel Online.

Reuters reported that the 45-year-old journalist, Michael Scott Moore, arrived in the capital Mogadishu on a small plane on Tuesday and was in good health, Spiegel Online said.

Moore, who had worked for Spiegel before his abduction, was kidnapped by armed militia in the city of Galkayo in January 2012 while researching a book on piracy.

"The Western journalist was released," Abdi Yusuf, interior minister of the semi-autonomous region of Galmudug in central Somalia where he was abducted, told Reuters. He added that, as far as he was aware, no ransom was paid.

"We never lost hope and are celebrating with Michael and his mother Marlies that this nightmare has finally come to an end," said Spiegel Online editor-in-chief Wolfgang Buechner.

American and German authorities had tried to negotiate his release and Moore's captors had published pictures of him.

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