Seven pirates arrested

May 26, 2009 12:00 am

, STOCKHOLM, May 26 – The Swedish navy arrested seven pirates early Tuesday as they tried to hijack a Greek merchant vessel in the lawless waters off Somalia, Sweden’s military said.

"Seven pirates were detained by personnel on board the Swedish corvette HMS Malmoe overnight. The pirates were caught when they tried to board a merchant vessel in the Gulf of Aden," a statement said.

The Swedish navy had responded to a distress call from the M/V Antonis, which said it was under attack from pirates using rocket-propelled grenades. The ship was still under attack when HMS Malmoe arrived at the scene.

"The Swedish vessel fired warning shots into the air with cannons, machine guns and snipers to try to get the pirates to stop their attack," the statement said.

"At the same time, special forces went out under cover of darkness and boarded the fishing boat. Seven pirates were seized, as well as two pistols, a GPS navigator and a ladder," it said.

The pirates were to be taken to Djibouti on board the HMS Malmoe, where further instructions would be issued by the European Union’s NAVFOR-Atalanta mission command.

Sweden has had three corvettes and 152 personnel patrolling the Gulf of Aden since May 15 as part of the EU force.


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