Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pirates Take Korean Ship with 43 Seafarers

As Reported HERE
SEOUL, South Korea – Somali pirates have hijacked a South Korean-operated fishing boat with 43 sailors, Seoul's Foreign Ministry said Sunday.
Two South Korean, two Chinese and 39 Kenyans were aboard the 241-ton Kenya-registered trawler when it was attacked Oct. 9 in the waters off Kenya's Lamu Island, South Korea's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
It wasn't immediately known if negotiations with the pirates had begun or if they were demanding a ransom.
South Korean officials declined to provide details about the kidnapping, saying that might undermine chances for the fishermen's safe release.
Seoul's Yonhap news agency, however, reported that the ship had been in the area for about one month before being seized and taken to a pirate stronghold in northern Somalia. The report cited an unidentified South Korean resident living in Kenya.
Noel Choong of the International Maritime Bureau's anti-piracy office in Malaysia could not immediately confirm the attack.
Kidnapping for ransom is common in Somalia. Hostages are rarely hurt and usually freed after a ransom is paid. Somalia, which has had no functioning government since 1991, is the world's top piracy hot spot, with armed gangs seizing cargo and holding crew for ransom.
In April, a South Korean-operated oil tanker was also hijacked by Somali pirates with its 24-member crew. They still haven't been released.

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