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Pirates hijack ship with Indian crew

November 28, 2008 21:35 IST

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In yet another hijacking of a cargo ship, heavily-armed Somali pirates on Friday seized a chemical tanker with 25 Indians among the 31 crew in the Gulf of Aden.

The hijacking came barely two weeks after 'M T Stolt Valor', which was seized on September 15 along with an 18-member crew, was released by the pirates.

The fate of another seven Indians on board the Hong Kong-registered 'Delight', captured by the pirates last week, remained unclear.

Besides having 25 Indians aboard, the Liberian-registered cargo ship 'MT Biscaglia' had three Bangladeshis, two Britons and an Irish national among the crew, Directorate General of Shipping in Mumbai said.

The vessel, which was sailing between Indonesia and Europe, was seized in the Gulf of Aden and now headed for an unknown destination after the armed hijackers took control of it. Its last port of call was Dumai in Indonesia.

Immediately on receipt of the report of the hijacking, Indian Navy, Coast Guard and International Maritime Board piracy reporting centre have been informed for assistance, the DG Shipping said in a statement.

The piracy reporting centre in Kuala Lumpur has responded and contacted the coalition forces which have sent out two helicopters. The ship, on way to Europe via Suez Canal, was hijacked at around 07.00 hours, the statement said, adding an Indian naval vessel in the Gulf of Aden was refuelling as scheduled at the time of hijacking of the cargo vessel. No other information was available, the statement said. 

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