A British-owned bulk carrier with a Ukrainian crew of 24 was freed by Somali pirates after a $2.8 million ransom payment.
A British-owned bulk carrier with a Ukrainian crew of 24 was freed by Somali pirates after a $2.8 million ransom payment, seven months after it was hijacked, Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Valeriy Chalyi said. The Maltese-flagged Ariana was taken about 250 miles (400 kilometers) south of the Seychelles islands on May 2.
?Ariana cannot move by itself, a Portuguese vessel is guarding it,? Chalyi said at a press conference in Kiev today. ?The Ukrainian sailors will return to Ukraine by the year- end.?
Somalia has led a global surge in piracy this year, according to the International Maritime Bureau. Attacks globally had surpassed 2008 levels by September, according to the group, part of the International Chamber of Commerce. The number of attacks in the Indian Ocean off Somalia more than tripled to 47, from 12 in the same period a year earlier. There were 100 incidents in the Gulf of Aden, up from 51, the IMB said.
Now, more than 75,000 Ukrainians are on vessels under different flags, Chalyi said. ?We assume that such a situation may happen again. So we set up a special group in the Foreign Affairs Ministry to prevent a repetition,? he said.