It has been almost one year since South African Pierre Korkie was kidnapped in Yemen, a family spokesperson said on Saturday.
“[On May 27], Pierre Korkie will be held captive for one year ,” said spokesperson Michael Venter.
Korkie and his wife Yolande were kidnapped by the militants in Taiz, Yemen, in May last year. Yolande was released on January 10 and returned to South Africa on January 13. Gift of the Givers helped negotiate her release.
At the time of the kidnapping, Korkie was a teacher in Yemen, while his wife did relief work in hospitals.
The kidnappers demanded $3-million (About R32.5-million) in exchange for Korkie’s safe return.
Gift of the Givers tried to make contact with al-Qaeda through international media and circulated an interview with their office manager in Yemen, Anas al-Hamati. Al-Hamati was forced to leave Yemen at the end of January for his own security after al-Qaeda accused him of stealing the ransom money.
Tribal leaders in Yemen then took over the talks with al-Qaeda.
On February 25, tribal leaders found out that Korkie was still alive, but in bad health. Since then, no more information was available on his condition. – Sapa