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Fishing boat off Somali coast hijacked; 16 members aboard

SHARE Fishing boat off Somali coast hijacked; 16 members aboard

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — A maritime official says pirates have hijacked a Thai fishing boat with 16 crew members off the coast of Somalia — the eighth ship seized in the area in the past two weeks.

Noel Choong of the International Maritime Bureau says it was seized in the Gulf of Aden on Tuesday as it traveled toward the Mideast.

The vessel was captured the same day that Somali pirates hijacked a Saudi supertanker carrying $100 million in crude, the most brazen attack in the region yet.

A major Norwegian shipping group on Tuesday ordered its more than 90 tankers to sail around Africa rather than use the Suez Canal after the Saudi supertanker was seized.

Odfjell SE said it made the decision to divert its ships after pirates seized the Saudi Arabian supertanker MV Sirius Star Saturday hundreds of miles off the coast of Kenya .

We will no longer expose our crew to the risk of being hijacked and held for ransom by pirates in the Gulf of Aden, said Terje Storeng, Odfjell's president and chief executive. Unless we are explicitly committed by existing contracts to sail through this area, as from today we will reroute our ships around Cape of Good Hope.