Home News News Contact Us About Us Sign In

MV Orna Released By Pirates; Held Almost 2 Years

October 20, 2012 - 13:43:57 UTC

MV Orna Released After Nearly 2 Years Held By Pirates [UPDATED]

Original Source: AP

A pirate commander in Somalia says that a cargo ship, MV Orna, was freed after being held captive for nearly two years. Six crew remain in captivity.

MV Orna Released

MV Orna Released Following Ransom Payment  - Photo:NSC

Hassan Abdi said Saturday that a $600,000 ransom was paid for the MV Orna on Friday. But he said six hostages are still being held by the pirates on land. Pirates shot and killed one of the ship's crew members in August over delayed ransom payments.

Abdi said that other ships towed the vessel away because it had run out of fuel.

The MV Orna, which is owned by a UAE company, was hijacked 400 nautical miles northeast of the Seychelles 10 December 2010.

Only 13 of the 19 crew held aboard the UAE-flagged MV Orna since December 2010 are on their way home. Five Syrian men and one Sri Lankan [the captain, chief engineer and four others] remain as hostages of two rival Somali pirate groups who have had a falling out over ransom demands, according to the ship owner's legal adviser in Ajman, reported the National in Dubai.

In September 2012, Somalia Report said that one of the crew held hostage on MV Orna who was killed as part of a tactic to speed up ransom payment. was a Syrian and it is believed that one other was also wounded.

“The killing was a message to the owners of the ship who paid no heed to our ransom demands,” a pirate negotiator told the AP by phone. ”More killings will follow if they continue to lie to us — we have lost patience with them. Two years is enough.”

The incident is believed to be the first time Somali pirates have killed a hostage as a tactic to speed up ransom payments.

UPDATE - MV Orna was freed by pirates on Saturday. Subsequently, Ocean Shield flagship, HNLMS Rotterdam, approached the vessel and provided "humanitarian support in the shape of medical assistance, food and water to the freed crew."


"We conducted a medical check, provided food and water and in general lent a listening ear. Fortunately, the crew are in relatively good physical health. By helping each other, they managed to find a way to cope with the difficult circumstances they lived in," doctor on board HNLMS Rotterdam, Lieutenant Commander Rijkers, was quoted as saying in a statement.


Indian Ocean pirate hijackings are down drastically this year thanks to improved on-board defenses, but pirates still hold six ships and some 170 crew members. Other agencies report the figure to be 10 ships (including dhows) with 170 hostages held.

Newsletter iconSubscribe to our newsletter. Receive a weekly round-up of all piracy-related news.


Information, Security, Safety; Shared

Submitted by Team@oceanuslive.org


Print Friendly and PDF