NATO warship rescues Indian sailors freed by pirates

ON BOARD NRP CORTE-REAL Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:11pm IST

The rescued crew of Indian dhow Vishvakalyan sits on top of their cargo of charcoal as they receive assistance from NATO's Portuguese flagship NRP Corte-Real (background) June 13, 2009. REUTERS/Alison Bevege

The rescued crew of Indian dhow Vishvakalyan sits on top of their cargo of charcoal as they receive assistance from NATO's Portuguese flagship NRP Corte-Real (background) June 13, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Alison Bevege

Related Topics

ON BOARD NRP CORTE-REAL (Reuters) - A NATO warship rescued fourteen Indian sailors off Somalia on Saturday, a day after they were freed by pirates who had beaten them during 10 days of captivity.

The pirates released the weakened crew of the dhow Vishvakalyan on Friday after stealing provisions and kit.

"They hit the crew all over, on the head, everywhere," the Vishvakalyan's captain, Ismail Abdurehman said.

The pirates took most of the seamen's belongings including radios, phones, television sets and presents bought for their families. The pirates left only three chickens and the dhow's cat.

The Portuguese warship NRP Corte-Real gave the dhow food and fuel.

International navies are patrolling the busy shipping lanes off Somalia to try and prevent hijacks that have worried shipping firms, driven up insurance costs and prompted some vessels to avoid the Gulf of Aden.

On Friday night, the pirates shot wildly into the air, shouting "Go, go, go," at the sailors, said Abdureham.

Dario Precioso, a lieutenant on the NRP Corte-Real said the dhow crew set off for the Yemeni island of Socotra to get help after being released by the pirates.

"But they probably would have died if we hadn't found them -- as they had no supplies," he said.

The NRP Corte-Real spotted the dhow about 20 nautical miles southeast of Hobyo off Somalia's coast.

The International Maritime Bureau says more ships have been attacked off Somalia so far in 2009 than in the whole of 2008 -- 133 reported attacks compared with 111 in 2008.

But fewer of those attacks have been successful -- 30 compared with 42 last year.

Abdurehman said the pirates attacked the Vishvakalyan as it carried a shipment of charcoal from the port of Brava, south of Mogadishu, to Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates on June 3.

The seamen, from Gujarat, India, had been unable to call for help because the pirates broke their VHF radio antenna.

FILED UNDER:
  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Expanding Ties

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Interview with Bulgari CEO

Interview: Bulgari CEO

Bulgari CEO: we shouldn’t have left India so we’re back  Full Article 

U.S. in Afghanistan

U.S. in Afghanistan

Obama signs order expanding U.S. Afghanistan role - NY Times  Full Article 

Available For Remake

Available For Remake

Bollywood finally wants to pay the price for remakes  Full Article 

Economic Reform

Economic Reform

Long "to do" list for Modi as clock ticks on reform  Full Article | Related Story 

E-books Case

E-books Case

Apple $450 mln e-book settlement gets final court approval  Full Article 

Movie Review

Movie Review

"Happy Ending" is old wine in an older bottle  Full Article 

Athletes of Year

Athletes of Year

Frenchman Lavillenie, Kiwi Adams are Athletes of Year.  Full Article 

Japan Politics

Japan Politics

Japan PM seeks referendum on "Abenomics" in snap election.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage