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Jakarta Post

Govt did not pay ransom to Somali pirates: Ministry

  • Liza Yosephine
    Liza Yosephine

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, October 24, 2016   /  08:19 pm
Govt did not pay ransom to Somali pirates: Ministry Security talks – Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi (right) talks with Indonesian Military commander Gen. Gatot Nurmantyo after a press conference on the government’s efforts to secure the release of Indonesian sailors taken hostage by Abu Sayyaf militants, in Jakarta on Oct. 2. (Antara/Widodo S. Jusuf)

The government reiterated on Monday its no-ransom policy, following the release of four Indonesian sailors who had been held hostage by Somali pirates for over four years.

"The government remains in its position not to pay ransom to hostage takers," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Arrmanatha Nasir told reporters on Monday.

Arrmanatha was responding to questions on the release of the four Indonesians who were among 26 hostages released by Somali pirates on Oct. 22.

The hostages included sailors from China, Cambodia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam, who were on board the Naham 3 vessel when it was seized in waters near the Seychelles on March 26, 2012.

Arrmanatha said the release process had taken a long time due to complex coordination between the governments of the hostages' countries of origin and cooperation across civil and non-governmental organizations.

Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi earlier confirmed that all 26 crewmen had arrived in Nairobi on Sunday evening, local time. The minister conveyed her appreciation to all parties involved in the release process, including the UN, which flew the men from Somalia to the Kenyan capital via a humanitarian flight.

Retno said the four Indonesian sailors — Sudirman, Supardi, Ade Manurung and Nelson Pesirero — were in the protection of the Indonesian Embassy, where they were undergoing medical check-ups before returning to Indonesia.

In total, 29 crew were on board the Naham 3. The captain died during the attack while two other men, one of whom was Indonesian, died of illnesses during while being held captive. (ebf)

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