Friday, February 5, 2010

Big Bad Pirates Strike Again in Somalia Part 1

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- Danish special forces disrupted the takeover by pirates of a cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden on Friday, in a maneuver rarely undertaken by NATO warships, a naval spokesman said.

The crew of the Ariella had seen a skiff approaching their position in the Gulf of Aden early Friday morning with six or seven armed men firing at them, said Cmdr. Dan B. Termansen, the commander of the Danish warship Absalon. The crew ran to the bridge, where the captain sent out a distress call and put the ship on full steam ahead, Termansen said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.

Despite the vessel's increased speed and the choppy waters, the pirates balanced a ladder in their tiny boat and crawled up the side of the ship, he said. The first pirate crept through barbed wire the crew had stretched across the ship's freeboard and fired a burst of automatic gunfire into the air. At that point, Termansen said, the ship's crew members locked themselves in a secure room. All are reported safe.

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