Pirates seize German-owned freighter off Oman: EU force

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Pirates have seized a German-owned freighter registered in Antigua and Barbuda off the Omani coast, the EU naval task force Atalante said Tuesday.

It said in a statement that the EMS River , which was 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 pirated vessel Motivator was in the vicinity of EMS River throughout the attack which further enforces the current pirate modus operandi of the use of motherships," it noted.

The EU task force says 26 vessels and 609 hostages are being held by pirates off the coast of Somalia.

© 2010 AFP

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