Pirates take Greek ship toward Somali coast

November 7, 2009 12:00 am

, ATHENS, Nov 7 – A Greek cargo ship hijacked this week was being taken toward the Somali coast, but its crew members were unharmed, the ship’s operating company said Saturday.

"The master of the vessel has reported that the crew are unharmed and the vessel is sailing towards the Somali coast," Athens-based Meadway Shipping and Trading Inc said in a statement.

"The company is currently doing everything in its power to ensure the situation is resolved quickly."

Meadway Inc said the cargo ship, Delvina, was hijacked early on Thursday northeast of the Comoros Islands in the Indian Ocean. It had been sailing from Ukraine to Mombasa in Kenya.

Greek port police on Friday said the Delvina was captured 280 nautical miles east of the Tanzanian coast.

The company gave no details on the crew, but the European Union’s naval mission to the region said it numbers 14 Filipinos and seven Ukrainians.

Another Panamanian-flagged Greek ship, Theophoros I, was attacked early Thursday in the Gulf of Aden but the pirates were driven off.

The Theophoros I continued its route to Hong Kong escorted by two warships of the anti-piracy international force in the area.

Greek authorities said the crew used high-pressure hoses against the pirates, but a Turkish military official said later the Turkish warship Gediz averted the attack.

A military statement said five pirates were trying to attack the Theophoros, which belongs to Greek company Good Faith. The Turks seized weapons including a rocket launcher, it added.

The incident happened 125 kilometres (about 80 miles) off the coast.


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