Tuesday, November 17, 2009

28 North Korean crew members taken by pirates off Somalia

The Associated Press is reporting that pirates operating off the coast of the virtually lawless failed state of Somalia have attacked two vessels. [UPDATE: The story is now in the BBCChristian Science Monitor, New York Times, and Korea Herald]

It appears that a chemical tanker called the MV Theresa has been captured. The crew includes twenty-eight North Koreans.

The region has been lousy with pirates for some years now, with South Korea joining the US and others in patrolling the region. North Korean vessels have been targeted before, with unlikely heroes coming to their rescue. I wonder if that will happen again.

Let's just hope there's no unnecessary bloodshed.

Oh, and am I the only one who thinks it's odd that the North Koreans would be on a vessel named after several Catholic saints, not to mention one of the most famous Catholic figures of modern times.

UPDATE2 (Thursday morning, Korea time):
So much for unnecessary bloodshed. Fox News is reporting that the captain of the tanker, who was shot during the hijacking, has since died.

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