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    First U.S. Vessel Hijacked by Somali Pirates is Back in Control of the Crew.
    News; Posted on: 2009-04-08 22:21:21 [ Printer friendly / Instant flyer ]
    The captain is being held hostage by the pirates.

    When Somali pirates skimmed across the Indian Ocean and muscled their way aboard a US food aid ship yesterday, it had all the hallmarks of a depressingly familiar scene: a hostage cargo ship, a vulnerable crew and a well-organized team of brigands with the firepower and know how to seize a ship and demand a fat ransom.

    But as a dramatic tussle on the high seas played out last night, it became clear this was a startlingly different confrontation to the regular string of hijackings and hostage-takings that have plagued the waters off the Horn of Africa in recent months.


    The 20-member crew, all Americans, had been training for such a hijack and put that into action, foiling the pirates. Although apparently unarmed and facing four pirates with Kalashnikovs, a ship's officer said they had managed to overpower one and take him captive, and recapture the ship.

    But the remaining three pirates took the ship's captain, Richard Phillips, with them as a hostage. The crew today are pinning their hopes of his rescue on the destroyer USS Bainbridge, which has arrived at the scene, and half a dozen other vessels speeding to the rescue.

    Continue...

    A Recent History of Hijackings by Somali Pirates
    News Source: guardian.co.uk

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