Somali pirates hijack Lanka-bound ship

Monday, 17 January 2011 00:23 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Somali pirates have hijacked a Sri Lanka-bound South Korean cargo ship with 21 crew members on board on Saturday afternoon.

Somali pirates on a boat have attacked the 11,500-tonne freighter Samho Jewelry in the Indian Ocean, as the ship was sailing from the United Arab Emirates to Sri Lanka, Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported.

The ship, reportedly carrying a chemical cargo with 21 crew members was seized in waters, approximately 350 nautical miles South East of the port of Muscat in Oman.

A South Korean official has said that the location of the ship is known and the crew including eight South Koreans was all confirmed to be safe through communications between the Samho Shipping Company and the ship.

The ship’s 21-member crew comprised Myanmarian, Korean and Indonesian nationals. There were no Sri Lankans in the crew.

There are now 29 vessels and 693 hostages being held by pirates off the coast of Somalia, according to European Union naval Force which monitors the pirates’ activity.