A YouTuber physician known for posting travel clips is reported to be safe after being held captive for 25 days in Mali, according to the Foreign Ministry.
Tanee Sangrat, director-general of the Department of Information, said on Monday that Dr Nopparat Rattanawaraha, also known as Mor Song and host of the Mor Song Tong Loke YouTube channel, was released after a US$150,000 (5.5 million baht) ransom was paid to kidnappers.
According to the ministry, the YouTuber arrived in Mali on Sept 28 and went missing after losing contact with his private local tour guide a day after.
Dr Nopparat’s family alerted the Thai embassy in Dakar, Senegal, about his disappearance.
After weeks of uncertainty, Dr Nopparat was found safe by local authorities in the city of Kemparana 25 days after being abducted, the ministry said. According to the ministry, terrorists had infiltrated Kemparana which is located on the border with Burkina Faso.
However, the ministry did not say which group was responsible for the kidnapping.
Mr Tanee also said Dr Nopparat, who produces travel content on his YouTube channel, is preparing to return to Thailand with the help of the ministry.
Meanwhile, Dr Nopparat, in an interview with Thairath TV, said he was safe.
The YouTuber said he was kidnapped while walking along a Kemparana street. He said he was chained up during his captivity.
“I am safe right now. Sorry if I’ve given cause for people to be concerned,” he said.