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4 Aug, 2009 10:36

Somali pirates release German freighter

Somali pirates have released a German freighter after allegedly receiving a ransom of 2.7 million dollars. The freighter, guarded by European navy ships, is heading to Kenya.

The vessel, the 20,000-ton Hansa Stavanger, was captured 640 kilometers off the southern Somali port of Kismayu on April 4.

There are three Russians among the international crew of 24, which includes German, Ukrainian and Filipino nationals.

“The crew is alright now. They have been able to call their relatives,” said Mikhail Voytenko, editor-in-chief of the Russian maritime bulletin “Sovfrakht”. “The vessel is heading south to the Kenyan port of Mombasa, which was its destination before the capture. It is expected to arrive within three days.”