American missionary pilot, 2 others released from Mozambique prison
An American missionary pilot and two other men who were jailed in Mozambique for more than four months on suspicion of supporting insurgents in the war-torn nation have been released from prison.
Ryan Koher and two South Africans, W.J. du Plessis and Eric Dry, left prison late Tuesday afternoon, according to the U.S.-based ministry Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF).
Koher is said to be “doing well” following his release and has spoken multiple times with his wife, Annabel, and his two sons since his release, a spokesperson told The Christian Post.
All three men are required to remain in Mozambique and the case is still ongoing.
Saying the organization is “grateful to the courts in Mozambique for this decision,” MAF is “continuing to learn more about next steps in the case from our legal counsel,” the spokesperson added.
“The executive leadership team of MAF-US expresses its thanks for all those who have been praying for Ryan and his family,” the statement added. “We ask for continued prayer that the final outcome will be a full release of Ryan from any charges and trial.”
Koher’s release appeared to be an answer to prayer after his wife Annabel told CP last week that while she was unsure how the legal process would play out, she has been praying for God to use Koher's time in prison for His glory and bring him safely back to his family.
"Obviously, overall, we would pray that he would be released and that the prosecutor would realize … that Ryan didn't do anything wrong, and that he should be free and he would dismiss the case, that Ryan would be released and be home with us soon," she told CP.
Koher and the two other MAF volunteers were arrested in November 2022 while preparing to help load vitamins and other supplies on a plane bound for an orphanage in Cabo Delgado, the northernmost province in Mozambique.
To date, no charges have been filed in what is still an ongoing investigation, the family told CP.
Since 2017, a rebel group believed to have links to the Islamic State has seized villages, churches and mosques in the northern region of the African nation, leaving hundreds dead.
Over the last five years, about 1 million people have fled their villages in Cabo Delgado as war rages between security forces and insurgents.
Through its local partner Ambassador Aviation, MAF says it has flown supplies to various orphanages yearly since 2014.