« back to From the Frontline home

Australian PM meets mother of kidnapped journalist

| 2


The mother of Nigel Brennan, the freelance photojournalist who was kidnapped in Somalia in August 2008, has met with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. According to Sky News Heather Brennan made an unexpected approach to Rudd when she approached the PM as he was visiting Queensland today. She spoke with him for twenty minutes,

"These are difficult, sensitive and complex negotiations... (said Rudd) ...If I was to look at the consular cases upon which I have spent the most time since I've been prime minister, it is this one,' he said.  'It is one which the government takes seriously, but I do not underestimate the degree of difficulty involved in this. It is very hard." link

Meanwhile friends of Nigel Brennan are seriously worried about his health following reports in May and a recent telephone conversation with the kidnap victim,

Family friend Rebecca Hutchins urged the media to give attention to the case.  'He is really very, very unwell,' Ms Hutchins said.  'I think mentally he would be in a very dark place and emotionally. Physically that is where the problem is at the moment. He is not well.'  The family spoke to Mr Brennan as recently as Wednesday. link

Please consider taking two minutes to sign the petition to help both Nigel Brennan and Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout who was kidnapped along with Nigel in August, 2008. And link to the petition if you have a blog, twitter account, website or email account.

Image taken from ABC Local News website.


Vasco Pyjama | July 23, 2009 11:42 PM

The petition looks like Brennan and Lindhout are political prisoners, but my understanding is that they are kidnapped for ransom. Isn't it the simple situation that if no ransom is raised, they won't be released? And the Australian government (unlike Italian government) rightly won't pay ransoms? Furthermore, I have heard it said that the greater the publicity, the higher the ransom will be. For me, I'm still not clear what this petition is trying to get the Government to do. I'm not sure they can do much. They certainly should not pay a ransoms (which may encourage kidnapping of Australians), and lobbying the Somali government is meaningless. So are we asking for a commando-style rescue which may lead to the death of a few people?

Graham Holliday | July 24, 2009 5:58 AM

"Isn't it the simple situation that if no ransom is raised, they won't be released?"

Yes, I think you're right. And you've spent enough time in Somalia to know this is all about cash, but what else can ordinary folks do? Not much. As I've said before, I'm not a believer in online petitions and possibly the only result of this is that it "raises awareness".

As for a commando style raid... by who and how? I don't see that happening really. I don't see much happening at all to be honest.