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Pirates raid oil tanker off Malaysia, take away three crew

By Al-Zaquan Amer Hamzah and Keith Wallis KUALA LUMPUR/SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Armed pirates raided an oil tanker off the coast of Malaysia and took three crew members with them, Malaysian maritime officials said on Wednesday, underscoring increasing threats to shipping in one of the world's busiest waterways. The incident in the Malacca Strait, a route for about a quarter of the world's seaborne oil trade, has fuelled fears piracy could be on the rise in the area and drive up ship insurance premiums.

Pirates kidnap three on Singapore tanker off Malaysia

Heavily-armed pirates have boarded a Singapore-managed tanker in the Strait of Malacca, kidnapping three Indonesian crew and stealing some of its cargo of diesel fuel, the International Maritime Bureau said Wednesday. The attack occurred early Tuesday off Malaysia's west coast, said Noel Choong, head of the IMB's Kuala Lumpur-based Piracy Reporting Centre. The tanker was believed en route to Myanmar. "A tanker was boarded by about 12 heavily armed pirates," a report from the IMB said.

Pirates kidnap three on Singapore tanker off Malaysia

Armed pirates boarded a Singapore-managed oil tanker in the Strait of Malacca, kidnapping three Indonesian crew and stealing some of the vessel's shipment of diesel fuel, the International Maritime Bureau said Wednesday. The attack occurred early Tuesday off Malaysia's west coast, said Noel Choong, head of IMB's Kuala Lumpur-based piracy reporting centre. The diesel oil tanker was believed to be en route to Myanmar.

Pirates kidnap three on Japanese tanker off Malaysia

Armed pirates boarded a Japanese oil tanker in the Strait of Malacca, kidnapping three Indonesian crew and stealing some of the vessel's shipment of diesel fuel, Malaysian media said Wednesday. The attack occurred early Tuesday about 16 nautical miles off Malaysia's west coast, The Star quoted Malaysian authorities saying.

German court sentences Somali pirate to 12 years for kidnapping

BERLIN (Reuters) - A German court sentenced a Somali asylum-seeker to 12 years in jail on Thursday, for his involvement in the pirate hijacking of a tanker in the Indian Ocean in 2010. The judge in the Osnabrueck court in northern Germany said the man was guilty of kidnapping and severe extortion. The ship was released for a ransom of $5.5 million after eight months in the hands of Somali pirates.

Merchant ship shot at in Strait of Hormuz Sunday- NATO

DUBAI (Reuters) - Unknown assailants in a speedboat shot at a merchant vessel as it sailed through the Strait of Hormuz between Iran and Oman on Sunday, the NATO Shipping Centre (NSC) said. The unidentified merchant ship reported being shot at twice from close range from a speedboat carrying six people armed with machine guns, on Sunday morning. It repelled the attack with hoses and the vessel and crew are safe, NSC said.

Taiwan fishermen to use armed guards against pirates in Indian Ocean

Taiwan-registered fishing vessels operating in the pirated-infested waters of the Indian Ocean have obtained permission to hire armed guards on board, the island's fisheries authorities said Tuesday. The Fisheries Agency told Kyodo News the agency has approved applications of some 20 fishing boats operating in waters considered "threatened by piracy or illegal use of force" to hire private armed escorts to counter piracy.

Yemen upholds 10-year jail for 11 Somali pirates

An appeals court in the southern port of Aden upheld a 10-year jail term Sunday for 11 Somali pirates convicted of trying to hijack a ship in Yemeni waters. The group were convicted by a lower court in 2010 of hijacking a "foreign ship" in February 2009, using AK-47 assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenades and a ladder of the type used by pirates to board vessels.

Concern grows over rising piracy off West Africa

Grey, sleek, bristling with massive cannon and an assortment of machine guns, the French navy's Commandant Birot is well-equipped to patrol Africa's most dangerous stretches of ocean. Vessels like it played a key role in curbing pirate attacks off the coast of lawless Somalia, which saw a spate of cargo ships hijacked and ransomed for months and even years. But with attacks off the Horn of Africa in decline, the Birot is now needed off the continent's western coast in the Gulf of Guinea, as experts call for regional navies to shoulder more of the burden.

Italian marines will still be tried in India: foreign ministry

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Two Italian marines accused of killing two Indian fishermen will still be tried in India, the foreign ministry said on Tuesday, a day after the government dropped a plan to prosecute the men under a tough anti-piracy law. The decision underscored that the two-year-old case that has frayed ties between the two countries was far from over -- despite Monday's move to drop the more serious charges.
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