Pirates have hijacked and seized yet another sailing vessel off the eastern coast of Somalia. This is the sixth ship to be seized within the past week. However, this time it was the 17,000-ton, Danish owned, US flagged cargo ship, Maersk Alabama, with 21 Americans aboard.
The Maersk Alabama, operated under the name Maersk Alva, was hijacked off the coast of Somalia early Wednesday
The U.S. Navy confirmed that a U.S. flagged ship with 21 members of crew was hijacked early Wednesday off the eastern coast of Somalia.
Spokesman Lt. Nathan Christensen said the attacked happened in the early hours of the morning hours, about 280 miles (450 kilometers) northeast of Eyl, a town in the northern Puntland region of Somalia
Sources from the U.S. government said the incident happened Wednesday at approximately 7:30 a.m. local time. The ship, Maersk Alabama, was en route to Mombasa, Kenya when it was attacked about 310 miles off the Somalia coast.
No action has been taken so far against the pirates, according to a spokesman for the U.S. military’s 5th Fleet in Bahrain.
“There is a task force present in the region to deter any type of piracy, but the challenge remains that the area is so big and it is hard to monitor all the time,” 5th Fleet spokesman Lt. Nathan Christensen said.
He said U.S.-flagged ships are not normally escorted by the military, unless they request it from the U.S. Navy.
UPDATE I: US ship in stand-off with Somali pirates
A stand-off was developing in the Indian Ocean on Wednesday night after the crew of a US-flagged container ship regained control of their ship from pirates but saw their captain left adrift with the attackers in a lifeboat.
The 20-strong crew of the Maersk Alabama fought back after the vessel was boarded by pirates 350 nautical miles off Somalia’s east coast, in an area that has seen a surge in piracy.
UPDATE III: Numerous updates on situation at Michelle Malkin.com
UPDATE IV: How will Obama deal with Issues of Piracy?
TigerHawk states it is, Testing time: How will President Obama respond to piracy? My guess is Barack Obama will hold a town hall meeting with them and apologize.