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22 August 2017 03:42 (South Africa)

Somali pirates attack ship for second time

Lightning does strike twice. Ask the owners of the US-flagged ship Maersk Alabama that was central to a bloody hijacking some seven months ago. The vessel has been attacked again in the dangerous shipping route through the Gulf of Aden. Reports say the ship came under automatic weapons fire from pirates about 350 nautical miles off the Somali coast. But this time it fought the attackers off. The same ship was hijacked in the Indian Ocean earlier this year, with its captain held hostage for five days until US Navy snipers killed three pirates and arrested a fourth, before rescuing the seafarer. Meanwhile, it seems the pirates have become greedy, as land-based buccaneers also exchanged gunfire with each other fighting over a multimillion-dollar ransom they received for releasing a Spanish fishing boat. News agencies also report the captain of a chemical tanker hijacked this week near the Seychelles, with North Korean crew on board, has died from gunshot wounds he sustained when the ship was attacked. Read more: CNN, Reuters, BBC, BBC

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