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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Somali pirates gain their revenge, four ships taken

Nairobi: Somali pirates have seized four ships along with over 60 crew members after they pledged to take revenge for the deaths of their fellow pirates. The Lebanese-owned cargo ship MV Sea Horse, the Greek-managed bulk carrier MV Irene EM, and two Egyptian fishing boats were Tuesday's seizures. A rescue operation by US naval forces to obtain the release of Captain Richard Williams which killed three pirates earlier on Sunday infuriated the other buccaneers. According to maritime officials, the Greek-managed ship carried 21 to 23 Filipino crewmen. The International Maritime Bureau reported 36 fishermen, all believed to be Egyptian, on the two Egyptian fishing boats. It was not known exactly how many crewmen the Sea Horse had, but a ship that size would probably need at least a dozen sailors. NATO spokeswoman Shona Lowe told AP that pirates in three or four speedboats captured the Sea Horse off Somalia's eastern coast only hours after the Irene was seized in an overnight raid in the nearby Gulf of Aden. The two Egyptian fishing boats were hijacked in the gulf off Somalia's northern coast. [15/04/09]