The Indian navy reports it has captured 23 Somali and Yemeni pirates who attacked an Ethiopian vessel in the Gulf of Aden. The navy says it dispatched a team of marine commandos in response to a distress call received Saturday.
AFP - The Indian navy said it has captured 23 Somali and Yemeni pirates who attacked a merchant vessel in the Gulf of Aden on Saturday.
An Indian navy ship sent its marine commandos on a helicopter towards the Ethiopian flag-bearing vessel MV Gibe after getting a distress call from it as it came under fire from two boats, the navy said in a statement.
The boats tried to escape on seeing the navy ship but were chased and the pirates surrendered to the commandos when they boarded the boats.
"Twenty-three personnel (12 Somali and 11 Yemeni) surrendered on boarding," the navy said.
The pirates, along with their arms and equipment, would be handed over to the appropriate authorities, it said, adding that the ship would return to patrolling the Gulf of Aden.
Last month, the navy said it had sunk a pirate "mother vessel" off Somalia in a battle that erupted after the Indian ship INS Tabar came under attack from gunmen on board the boat.
But the International Maritime Bureau later said that the vessel destroyed by the Indian navy was actually a Thai fishing trawler that had been seized by pirates off Yemen.
Somali pirates have carried out around 100 attacks in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean since the start of this year. They still hold at least 14 foreign vessels and more than 300 crew members to ransom.
Date created : 2008-12-13