Kidnappings and Hostage Situations Timeline

Oct 05 2014

Libya: British Hostage Released After Ransom Payment

An unidentified group released British teacher David Bolam after taking him captive in May, BBC reported Oct. 5.
Oct 05 2014

Mexico: Mass Grave Discovered

An anonymous tip resulted in the discovery of a mass grave near Iguala, Mexico, where some 15 bodies have already been recovered, BBC reported Oct. 5.
Sep 30 2014

Syria: Islamic State Releases Some 70 Kurdish Hostages

The Islamic State released some 70 Kurdish students it had been holding hostage since May 29, AFP reported Sept. 30.
Sep 25 2014

The Jihadist Kidnapping Threat Persists

Many militant organizations are using ransoms to fund their operations, but the threat to foreigners is not new.
Sep 24 2014

Turkey: Special Forces To Guard Foreign Offices

Turkish army special forces will take over responsibility for guarding Ankara’s foreign outposts in war zones, replacing Turkish police, The Daily Sabah reported Sept. 24.
Sep 22 2014

Algeria: Islamic State Affiliates Kidnap French Citizen

Militants who have pledged their allegiance to the Islamic State kidnapped a French citizen in Algeria on Sept. 21, a French Foreign Ministry spokesman said Sept. 22, AP and Reuters reported.
Sep 18 2014

Building Blocks of Personal Security: Reacting to Danger

Staying calm and focused can improve a person's chances of surviving an attack.
Sep 17 2014

Building Blocks of Personal Security: Understanding Your Environment

Understanding and being familiar with your environment can be the deciding factor in a life or death situation.
Sep 15 2014

Building Blocks of Personal Security: Mindset

In order to remain safe, individuals must learn and adopt the principles of personal security.
Aug 15 2014

Nigeria: Boko Haram Kidnaps Dozens From Fishing Village

Alleged Boko Haram militants kidnapped dozens of men and boys Aug. 15 from Doron Baga, a remote fishing village in northeast Nigeria, World Bulletin reported.
Aug 14 2014

Cameroon: Soldiers Missing After Boko Haram Attack

An unconfirmed number of Cameroonian soldiers are reported missing Aug. 14 after Boko Haram militants attacked the town of Bonderi on the Nigeria-Cameroon border, World Bulletin reported, citing an unnamed Cameroonian security official.
Jul 31 2014

Determining Whether 'Something Worse' Could Replace Hamas in Gaza

A jihadist entity with little international support and state sponsorship may actually be viewed by Israel as the lesser evil.

Since the “Stockholm syndrome” hit the media in the early 1970s, following a bank robbery in Stockholm, Sweden, kidnappings and hostage situations have become virtually an academic field of study. Situations vary, depending upon the captors and their goals. To avoid (or survive) such ordeals, it helps to know what they look like and how they might unfold.

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