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    Turkish cargo ship with 20 crew taken captive by Somali pirates

    HotNewsTurkey with wires
    30.10.2008 - 11:08 | Son Güncelleme:

    A Turkish cargo ship with 20 crew members on board was taken captive by Somali pirates on Thursday. (UPDATED)

    NATO forces stepped in to rescue the Turkish personnel on the ship named M/V Yasa Neslihan, Anatolian Agency reported.

    The ship carrying iron ore from Canada to China, owned by Yasa Denizcilik, was hijacked in the Gulf of Aden on Wednesday, the agency said.

    "We have lost contact with the ship for the last 24 hours. There is no contact or demand for a ransom from the pirates yet. According to the information we have the ship is in Aden Bay in Somalia," Fehmi Ulgener, an official at the company that owns the ship told Turkish NTV broadcaster.

    Andrew Mwangura, head of the Kenya-based East African Seafarers' Assistance Program, said a Turkish ship had been hijacked on Wednesday but said no more details were available.

    Earlier, Noel Choong, head of the International Maritime Bureaus (IMB) piracy reporting centre in Kuala Lumpur, reported the seizure and expressed concern that they were still taking place despite tightened security.

    "The attacks are continuing despite the international patrols. We are concerned with the ongoing hijacking and attacks," Choong said.

    Somali pirates have been causing havoc in one of the world's busiest shipping areas connecting Europe to Asia and the Middle East, taking large ransoms, hiking insurance costs, and threatening humanitarian supplies.

    Responding to a U.N. request, NATO ships have begun anti-piracy operations off Somalia. 

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