Somali pirates hijack Liberian flagged tanker

12:37, 28 November 2008
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 The Somali pirates have...

Armed Somali pirates have hijacked a Liberian-flagged chemical tanker in the pirate-infested Gulf of Aden, a regional maritime official confirmed on Friday, according to Xinhua.

    Andrew Mwangura, East Africa`s coordinator of the Seafarers Assistance Program (SAP), said the seized vessel has 30 crew members, mostly Indians onboard.

    "The pirates seized the Liberian flagged chemical tanker in the Gulf of Aden with 30 crew members mostly Indians. There are three Indonesians, about 25 Indians and the remaining could be British," Mwangura told Xinhua by telephone.

    "I received the report of the hijack today and I have not established the name of the vessel and where it was sailing to and when exactly the tanker was seized," Mwangura said.

    The Somali pirates have caused mayhem this year in the Gulf of Aden, one of the world`s busiest shipping lanes.

    The hijacked ships included a Saudi Arabian supertanker loaded with 100 million U.S. dollars worth of oil, the biggest hijacking in history.

    The tanker, the Sirius Star, belongs to Saudi Arabia`s state-owned Vela International and is carrying 2 million barrels of oil.

    It was hijacked Nov.15 about 833 km off Somalia, along with 25 crew members from Britain, Poland, Croatia and Saudi Arabia.

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