Journalist who was held hostage in Somalia and abused reveals story, memoir set to become a film

By Melissa Barclay,

Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout was kidnapped in Mogadishu, Somalia, while working on a story in August 2008.

Lindhout was with Australian photographer, Nigel Brennan, at the time of their disappearance.

During Lindhout’s 460-day captivity, she was tortured, raped and abused constantly, reported the Daily Mail.

“Abdullah was abusing me, he was hurting me, and I was protecting myself with and had an almost out of body experience,” Lindhout said.

Abdullah was one of the men who kidnapped and sexually abused Lindhout.

In exchange for a $600,000 ransom, Lindhout and Brennan were released.

Lindhout’s story took a surprising turn when she chose to forgive her kidnappers, even keeping in contact with one of them on Facebook.

One of Lindhout's captors messaged her on Facebook, and praised her for her work in Somalia.

Just four months after she had been released, Lindhout established the Global Enrichment Foundation, which gives women in Somalia higher education opportunities.

“They’re human beings with painful stories of their own. It doesn’t make them innocent by any means, but they’re products of a culture of violence,” she said.

Lindhout also wrote a memoir after being released.

According to The Georgia Straight, Lindhout’s memoir, A House in the Sky, includes the dark months during her captivity, but was still hopeful.

“It’s incredibly difficult to be kept in the dark. So the sky became one of the things that I really missed the most. Being in the dark, there’s a real weight to it. It’s heavy,” Lindhout said.

The memoir will be turned into a film, with Rooney Mara playing Lindhout.



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