Paul and Rachel Chandler
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Kidnap couple call for changes to piracy defence laws

Paul and Rachel Chandler, who were taken hostage by Somali pirates in 2009, have told Radio 5 live that they were disappointed in the way the government handled their kidnapping.

The couple - who were based in Tunbridge Wells at the time of their kidnap, but now live in Devon - were held captive for 13 months.

They said that although hostage lives should be taken into consideration they should not be paramount and that any decision to allow people on a small boat to be armed is a "step back to the 17th century".

The Foreign Affairs Select Committee, which has recommended that that the government should review how it handles the kidnap of British nationals abroad, said there was limited guidance on the use of lethal force against pirates trying to ambush vessels, and that ship captains were left in a difficult position trying to decide what action to take.

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The Chandlers were speaking to Breakfast, which broadcasts weekdays 0600 to 0900 on Radio 5 live.

  • 05 Jan 2012
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