Pirates demand $8 mln for UAE vessel

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14 Nov 2011

UAE_flag_photo_02Somali pirates have demanded a ransom payment of millions of dollars for the release of a UAE-owned vessel that they hijacked last year, Press TV reported.

The pirates are said to be demanding $8 million in ransom to free MV Iceberg 1 cargo ship and its 24 crew members. They have warned that hostages would be killed if ransom demands were not met soon.
Somali pirates seized MV Iceberg 1 some 10 nautical miles off the port of Aden in Yemen on March 29, 2010. The Panama-flagged ship was bound for Jebel Ali in the United Arab Emirates, and was carrying a mixed cargo of general mechanical equipment.
The crew consists of nationals from Yemen, India, Ghana, Sudan, Pakistan and the Philippines.
Meanwhile, Francis Koosom, the son of one of the sailors still languishing in captivity, launched a struggle for the release of his father and other 23 crew members of MV Iceberg 1.
He pleaded with the Ghanaian government to pay the ransom to secure the release of MV Iceberg crew.
Ghana's Foreign Minister Muhammed Mumuni has promised to take all the necessary efforts to ensure the release of all the MV Iceberg sailors.
Attacks by heavily armed Somali pirates in speedboats have prompted some of the world's largest shipping firms to abandon the Suez Canal and reroute cargo vessels around southern Africa, resulting in higher shipping costs.
Somalia has been without a functioning government since 1991, when warlords overthrew former dictator Mohamed Siad Barre.
The authority of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government is generally limited to the area around the capital Mogadishu.
Source: PressTV

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