MH60S

Monday, April 06, 2009

Somali Pirates: More Ships Captured Off of Somalia

Reported here:
Somali pirates have hijacked a Taiwanese fishing vessel and a British cargo ship, diplomats said Monday.

The Taiwanese ship MV Win Far 161 was seized near an island in the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean, the diplomats said. It is the second attack in the Seychelles within a week.

No location was given for the attack on the British-owned cargo ship the Malaspina Castle. The ship is Italian-operated and flies a Panamanian flag.
Later reports have the Malaspina Castle taken in the Gulf of Aden:
Somali pirates have seized a British-owned cargo ship and a Taiwanese ship, maritime officials say, after capturing three other vessels over the weekend.

The UK-owned Malaspina Castle was boarded in the Gulf of Aden, while the Taiwanese ship was seized near the Seychelles, according to reports.

A French yacht, a Yemeni tugboat and a German ship were also captured in the pirate-plagued waterway at the weekend.
More on the hijacking of the French yacht here:
Ecoterra International, an environment NGO closely monitoring illegal marine activities in the region, also reported Monday that a French-flagged yacht with at least four crew had been captured Saturday "around 640 kilometres (400 miles) off Ras Hafun in northeast Somalia."

There was no immediate confirmation from the French naval forces engaged in anti-piracy operations in the area, but Ecoterra said brief satellite phone contact was made with the ship on Sunday.

"The abducted yacht is currently sailing with eight knots towards the Somali Puntland coast.

"Local marine observers stated that the attack was reportedly launched from a captured Yemeni fishing vessel," the statement said.
The Piracy Slide is the latest offering of the NATO Shipping Centre from here. Click to enlarge.

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