Michael Scott Moore had been held as a hostage by pirates in Somalia for two years and eight months. The California-born reporter was freed amid stories that a $1.6 million ransom was paid to his Somali kidnappers.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. He Was First Taken in January 2012
— Puntland Media Assoc (@Map_Puntland) September 24, 2014
Moore was freed on Tuesday September 24 when he was flown from Somalia to the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. From there, he was flown to Germany, where he was a resident prior to being kidnapped in January 2012. Moore was taken in the city of Galkayo, close to the Somali border with Ethiopia.
2. His Captors Were ‘Tired’ of Him
According to Bile Hussein, a spokesman for the pirates who allegedly kidnapped Moore, he was released because the group had become tired of holding him. There was also an increasing worry that U.S. forces might try to take Moore back by force.
3. Moore Was the Author of ‘Sweetness & Blood’
US journalist Michael Scott Moore gets released after more than 2 years of captivity in Somalia pic.twitter.com/0gmtXUoGfi
— awccsomalia (@awccsomalia) September 24, 2014
Moore had been in Somalia while he researching a book on piracy in the region. In addition, he was contributor to numerous publications, most regularly, German newspaper, Der Speigel. His reporting was financed by a grant from the Pulitzer Center. He was also a surfing journalist and author. In 2010 he published the book Sweetness and Blood about surfing.
4. He Was a California Native
— Romeo Busiku Fred (@busikufredromeo) September 23, 2014
He was a native of Redondo Beach, California, according to CBS Los Angeles. Moore had also lived in Germany where he had taken up citizenship.
5. According to Spokesperson, ‘The German Government Cannot Be Bribed’
— Dahir Kulane (@Dahirkulane) September 23, 2014
The German government have denied that a ransom was paid to Somali pirates for Moore. According to an Associated Press report, a German foreign ministry spokeswoman, Sawsan Chebli, said “the German government cannot be blackmailed.”