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Wed 29 Dec 2010 10:50 AM

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German ship hijacked in pirate attack off Oman coast

Vessel was travelling from UAE to Greece when hijack took place, latest in a series of attacks in Gulf of Aden

German ship hijacked in pirate attack off Oman coast
Somalia pirates

A German cargo ship travelling from the UAE to
Greece has been hijacked by Somalian pirates off the coast of Oman, the latest
in a string of attacks in the region.

The MV EMS River, an Antigua/Barbuda
flagged ship, was seized around 175 nautical miles northeast of the port of
Salalah, Oman, the European naval force said.

The
eight-strong crew reported the ship MT Motivator, a 13,065 tonnes tanker that
was pirated in July along with its 18-strong crew, was used by the pirates
during the attack.

The
hijack comes just two weeks after pirates attempted an armed hijack of a Greek
ship off the coast of Salalah, and a week after the UAE-owned MV Orna was
seized off the coast of the Seychelles.

The
ship and its crew are still being held.

This
latest attack brings the total number of ships held by Somalian pirates to 26,
and the total number of hostages to 609.

Pirate
attacks continue to plague ships passing through the Indian Ocean and the Gulf
of Aden, despite international efforts to clamp down on hijackings.

Somali
pirates are estimated to make millions of dollars each year in ransom money,
paid by businesses to free ships and crew.

In
most cases the hijackings end when the ransom is paid, although the pirates are
said to be increasingly well-coordinated.

Somalia
hasn’t had an effective government in place for almost two decades. The resulting
political instability has allowed pirates to thrive in the waters off its
shores linking Europe to Asia and Africa.

 

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