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Somali pirates hijack Indian commercial ship

Bosaso is a seaport and the commercial capital of semi-autonomous Puntland region. (Photo: CC BY-SA 3.0)

Pirates have hijacked an Indian commercial ship off the coast of Somalia and the vessel is heading toward the shore, a former government anti-piracy official told Reuters on Monday.

“We understand Somali pirates hijacked a commercial Indian ship and (it is heading) towards Somalia shores,” Abdirizak Mohamed Dirir, a former director of the anti-piracy agency in Somalia’s semi-autonomous Puntland region, said.

Graeme Gibbon-Brooks of UK-based Dryad Maritime Security said industry sources had told him the vessel was en route to Bosasso from Dubai when it was hijacked on Saturday.

The pirates were on board and were taking the ship and its 11 crew members to Eyl in Puntland, he said.

Last month, Somali pirates hijacked an oil tanker, the first commandeering of a vessel since 2012, but released it after a fight with Puntland’s marine force.

The hijacking followed an outpouring of anger by locals over foreign fishermen flooding into their waters, some of whom have licenses to fish there.

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