Somali pirates release seized German-owned freighter

28th December 2010, Comments 0 comments

Somali pirates have released a German-owned chemical tanker with a crew of 22 that had been seized in May, the EU naval task force Atalante said Tuesday.

A statement from Atalante said the Marida Marguerite was "released from pirate control" on Tuesday.

The 13,000-tonne vessel, sailing under the flag of the Marshall Islands, had been captured 120 nautical miles (220 kilometres) south of Salalah, in Oman on May 8 after being approached by a pirate skiff firing automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades.

Its crew was made up of 19 Indians, two Bangladeshis and a Ukrainian.

Soon after the announcement, Atalante said Tuesday pirates seized another German-owned vessel, the EMS River off the Omani coast.

It added that the freighter, registered in Antigua and Barbuda and carrying petroleum products from the United Arab Emirates to Greece, was seized early Tuesday approximately 175 nautical miles northeast of the Omani port of Salalah.

The vessel has a crew of eight -- seven Filipinos and a Romanian.

Atalante said the pirates probably used a captured ship, the Motivator, to launch their attack.

The EU task force says 25 vessels and 587 hostages are now being held by pirates off the coast of Somalia.

© 2010 AFP

0 Comments To This Article