Somalis demonstrate for release of British couple

19th June 2010, Comments 0 comments

Several hundred people demonstrated Saturday in the central Somali town of Adado to call for the release of a British couple held by pirates for eight months.

"Around 500 people demonstrated today to call for the liberation of the hostages without conditions," Mohamed Adan Ticey, an official in the local administration.

Paul and Rachel Chandler, age 60 and 56, were seized when their yacht was hijacked by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean on October 23, and are believed to be being held somewhere in the region around Adado.

He said Adodo authorities had no contact with pirates holding the Chandlers, and no idea where they are being held, but were ready to assist the couple once they were released.

"We don't know where they are, and if we did, we would free them by force. We ask the pirates to free as soon as possible the innocent and elderly hostages," said one of the demonstrators, Nur Ahmed.

The couple have expressed in previous messages their fear that they would be killed if a ransom is not paid.

© 2010 AFP

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