London Taxi Driver Negotiates Chandler’s Release

Added by on November 16, 2010

A London taxi driver with roots in Somalia brokered the transfer of a $450,000 (£280,000) ransom that secured the release of captured British couple.

Mr and Mrs Chandler were kidnapped by Somali pirates while sailing off the Seychelles in October last year.

The 56-year old taxi driver, Dahir Abdullahi Kadiye, who divides his time between his wife and children in Leytonstone, east London, and his native Somalia, said he got involved in the hostage negotiation after his children told him they felt ashamed to be Somalis after seeing the story on television.

Mr Kadiye said he was motivated by “wanting to end the humiliation of Somalis in the UK, because the British government has been good to us and given us refuge”.

He led a group of local elders as well as armed men from Adado, a small Somali town, to an undisclosed location where Mr and Mrs Chandler were finally released.

In addition to taking on the role as negotiator, Mr Kadiye also actively helped raise money among the Somali community in the UK towards the couple’s ransom.

About being filmed together with the Chandlers after their release he said: “I am excited about standing next to the Chandlers on TV. This will make my sons very happy.”

Mr Kadiye also negotiated the release of Sirius Star, a Saudi supertanker.

The Chandlers were escorted to Nairobi by Mr Kadiye, where they stayed overnight with the British High Commissioner.

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