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Five million dollars in exchange/ Somali pirates free the ship with 23 hostages

2024-04-15 11:03:00, Kosova & Bota CNA
Five million dollars in exchange/ Somali pirates free the ship with 23 hostages
Owner of MV Abdullah, KSRM Group

Somali pirates released a hijacked vessel, the MV Abdullah, and its 23-person crew early Sunday after a $5 million ransom was paid, CNN reports. 

“The money was brought to us two nights ago as usual… we checked whether the money was fake or not. Then we divided the money into groups and left, avoiding government forces," Abdirashiid Yusuf, one of the pirates, told Reuters.

He added that the ship had been released with its entire crew. Somali government officials did not respond to a request for comment.

The MV Abdullah, a Bangladeshi-flagged carrier - a merchant vessel used to transport large quantities of cargo - was hijacked in March while en route from Mozambique to the United Arab Emirates.

The hijacking occurred about 600 nautical miles east of Somalia's capital Mogadishu.

Somali pirates wreaked havoc in the waters off the country's long coastline from 2008 to 2018. They had been "dormant" until late last year, when pirate activity began to pick up again.

Naval sources say the pirates may be emboldened by a relaxation of security or take advantage of the chaos caused by attacks on ships by Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi group as war in Gaza rages between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas. / CNA

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