Foley Foundation Welcomes Return of U.S. Hostage Mark Frerichs

WASHINGTON – Today James W. Foley Legacy Foundation welcomed reports that the Biden Administration has secured the release of American Mark Frerichs from captivity in Afghanistan. Frerichs, a Navy veteran from Illinois, was taken by the Haqqani network in January 2020 from Kabul, Afghanistan. News reports indicate that Frerichs was freed in a prisoner exchange for Afghan drug lord Bashir Noorzai, who was convicted in 2008 of directing a drug-smuggling operation and served 17 years in U.S. prisons.

“This is the call that every family of an American being held hostage or detained overseas dreams of getting,” said Foley Foundation Founder and President Diane Foley. “The Foley Foundation thanks President Biden and the men and women who work on hostage and detainee issues who have helped bring Mark home safely after a two-and-a-half-year ordeal in captivity. The compromises and decisions involved in these kinds of operations are often complex, but the only real measure of our moral resolve is whether we are actually bringing Americans home. Today, Mark is coming home.”

“Let us continue to prioritize the return of the other 64 Americans being held hostage or unjustly detained overseas today. As we celebrate Mark’s return, we cannot forget our commitment to them and their families. The Foley Foundation urges the Biden Administration and Congress to continue to do everything in their power to bring these other Americans home safely and swiftly, to support their families during their ordeals, and to ensure accountability for anyone who holds our people.”