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World Briefing / SOMALIA

Pirates hijack Greek tanker

October 12, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

Armed pirates hijacked a massive tanker as world powers headed toward the Somali coast to end a two-week standoff aboard a ship laden with tanks and weapons, officials said.

The latest ship to be seized, a Greek vessel flying a Panamanian flag, was traveling from Southeast Asia to Europe, said Noel Choong, head of the International Maritime Bureau's piracy reporting center in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. There were no further details on the ship, which was seized Friday.

Pirates who have been holding the Ukrainian vessel Faina for two weeks have threatened to destroy it unless a ransom is paid. Six U.S. warships are surrounding the Faina, and a Russian frigate was heading toward the scene, raising the stakes for a possible commando-style raid on the ship.

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