SEOUL, March 14 (Yonhap) –¬†South Korea‘s foreign ministry honored a Singapore-based shipping company for leading negotiations with Somali pirates that resulted in the release of four Korean sailors last December after more than 19 months of captivity, a ministry official said Thursday.
Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se awarded a commendation to Soh Wei Liang, the general manager of Glory Ship Management, on Wednesday, the official said. Soh is on a visit to Seoul at the invitation of the ministry-affiliated organization.
The four sailors were kidnapped by Somali pirates on April 30, 2011 aboard the tanker MT Gemini, which is owned by the Singapore-based Glory Ship Management, and set free on Dec. 1 last year.
Soh was honored for leading the drawn-out negotiations to free the Korean sailors on behalf of the Korean government, which maintains a policy of not directly engaging with pirates.