Somali pirates release cargo ship with 26 crew

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NAIROBI, Kenya – The European Union Naval Force says Somali pirates have freed a Panama-flagged cargo ship and its crew of 26 after a ransom was paid.

Tuesday’s statement from Cmdr. Anders Kallin said the MV Al Khaliq had 24 Indians and 2 sailors from Myanmar onboard. There were no details about the ransom payment.

The ship was hijacked in October some 180 miles (290 kilometers) west of the island nation of the Seychelles. Kallin says a tug sent by the owner is providing supplies to the ship and it had not requested help from the EU Naval Force.

Somali pirates now hold at least eight ships and more than 180 crew members. Piracy is of the few ways to make money in the arid Horn of Africa nation. It has not had a functioning government since 1991.