The two American sailors that were kidnapped on Oct. 23 off the coast of Nigeria have been returned, according several news reports.
“We welcome the release of the two U.S. citizens who were kidnapped from the M/V C-Retriever. For privacy reasons, we will not provide any additional information,” according to a statement from the U.S. State Department provided to the gCaptain maritime news service.
According to a report from Fox News, the sailors — believed to be the captain and chief engineer of the ship — were released after an unspecified ransom was paid.
The State Department added in its statement, “it is the policy of the United States not to pay ransom or encourage the payment of ransom money,”
State Department officials did not indicate who or what the organization paid the ransom.
Ships underway in areas prone to kidnapping and piracy often carry so-called kidnapping and ransom insurance in the event of an incident.
The kidnapping has done much to highlight ongoing piracy off the coast of Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea.