Hostage Tricks Captors Into Twitter Access

He was able to let family, friends know he was still alive
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 7, 2010 4:04 PM CDT
Freed Japanese freelance journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka.   (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)

(Newser) – A Japanese journalist held captive 5 months in Afghanistan used Twitter to let loved ones know he was alive—all because his captors weren't tech savvy. Kosuke Tsuneoka sent the tweets while teaching a low-ranking captor how to use his new cell phone, reports PC World. In explaining the wonders of the Internet to him and others, Tsuneoka raved about Twitter. "So they said, 'Try it.' "I don't think they realized they were being tricked."

Tsuneoka's tweets ("i am still alive, but in jail," read one) went out Friday, and his captors freed him on Saturday, though it's not clear if there's any connection. The Japanese government denies paying a ransom. The AP speculates that the captors freed Tsuneoka because he is Muslim.
(Read more Kosuke Tsuneoka stories.)

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