Published On: Fri, Jan 21st, 2011

Eight Somali pirates killed as South Korea rescues freighter crew

Navy commandos storm ship hijacked in Arabian Sea, and officials say all 21 crewmembers safe after operation

 South Korean navy commandos today rescued the crew of a freighter hijacked in the Arabian Sea last week, killing eight Somali pirates and capturing another five.

Officials in Seoul said all 21 members of the crew – 11 Burmese, eight Koreans and two Indonesians – were safe after the rescue mission.

“Our special forces stormed the hijacked Samho Jewelry … and freed all hostages,” Colonel Lee Bung-woo, a spokesman for the joint chiefs of staff, told reporters in Seoul.

“During the operation, our forces killed some Somali pirates and all of the hostages were confirmed alive.”

The captain of the Samho Jewelry was shot in the stomach by pirates during the rescue operation, but Lee said his injuries were not life-threatening.

In a brief televised statement, the South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak, said: “We will not tolerate any behaviour that threatens the lives and safety of our people in the future.”

Pirates seized the 11,500-tonne chemical carrier as it sailed from the United Arab Emirates to Sri Lanka last weekend.

A South Korean naval destroyer chased the freighter for days before the five-hour pre-dawn rescue mission was launched 800 miles off the north-east coast of Somalia.

The destroyer began its pursuit after Lee said “every possible measure” should be taken to free the crew.

Lee – who was criticised for his response to North Korea’s attack on Yeonpyeong island in November – declared the rescue mission a “complete success”.

Incidents of piracy have prompted several countries to step up patrols in the area in an attempt to secure shipments of oil and other products.

Last week’s hijacking came two months after the Samho Dream, an oil supertanker owned by the same shipping firm as the Samho Jewelry, was freed seven months after being seized.

The pirates claimed they had received a record ransom of $9.5m (£6m) in return for the vessel’s release.

Source: Guardian

About the Author

- My name is Abdulqani I'm one of the main reporters of Somalilandpress. I live in Hargeisa - Somaliland, so I always report at first hand from the motherland.

  • Musa

    Piracy is a matter of gambling death or alive. It is a risky worth taking to become a pirate. Thousands of pirates are in the European and African jails after they have been captured during their sea hunting. On the other hand, thousands of others have been killed on the spot. Alternatively, thousands of them are now gained richdom within a short period of time. The question is, Was their cause of death, jail or richdom Halal or Haram.
    Musa

  • Adan Farah

    Well done Korea , South. YOu guys did a great job . Nex time t please take out the Pirate King his name is Faroole . He is Pirate president living in Garowe,Bari region . Crime should never pay and it certainly did not pay this time.

    From Adan Farah , Republic of Somaliland

  • HMObsiye

    I hope this will be a lesson for both sides. For pirates, they should know that they will not expect ransoms on every ship they catch.For International companies stop rewarding criminals by giving them ransoms whenever, your ships were hijacked, but teach these thugs a lesson or two , the way South Korea navy just did.

  • mohamed

    The Piracy business is the same as the Mafia Business. Here both Puntland and Somalia
    so called self appointed warlords authorities continue to remain powerless to bring about
    real solutions to all the crisis befallen on this poor Nation. The success of South Korea at this
    incident will not be the last solution and unless a broader solution is found to rectify the
    Sovereignty functioning of Somalia different than how it's now being exercised it would seem
    that Somalia will not be freely stable so soon.
    Cheers.

  • Somali

    i dont support crime but ….im happy to see some of these guys scaring people off from dumping chemicals and stealing fish…anyone who gets too close deserves a wake up call …the sons of Somalia are out to get you!..i think the message has gone out to the world by now.

  • guled

    even though the pirates are criminals, they still are protecting the somali sea. So i support piracy till there is an affective government. Who else will do their job??

  • VDMGC

    Two somali pirates in a row, guled and somali. Salut to mother rusia and death to pirates.

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