November 8, 2008 / 11:53 AM / 11 years ago

Somali pirates hijack Danish-operated ship with 13 crew

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Somali pirates have hijacked a ship with 13 crew members on board in the Gulf of Aden, the ship’s Danish operator said Saturday.

Most of the crew members are Russian and are unharmed, the Danish company Clipper Group said.

“Clipper is in close communication with the relevant authorities to ensure the safety of crew and to establish contact with the hijackers,” the company said.

The ship, CEC Future, is a general cargo vessel built in 1994 in Denmark and is now sailing under a Bahamian flag.

Piracy is rife off Somalia, which has been mired in anarchy since warlords overthrew dictator Siad Barre in 1991.

The vital sealane in the Arabian Sea between Yemen and Somalia links the Middle East Gulf and Asia to Europe and bey ond via the Suez Canal and is critical to Gulf oil shipments. (Reporting by Gelu Sulugiuc; Editing by Matthew Jones)

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