Friday, October 10, 2008

Pirates Threaten to blow up M/V Faina

This just in

"Sugule Ali tells The Associated Press that the bandits who have been holding the MV Faina for the past two weeks met Friday and decided they will blow up the ship along with themselves and the crew, if they don't get the ransom."

And out of Russia Today, the news reports

"The ship owner got in touch with a pirate who said his name was Muhammad, reports the Maritime Bulletin Sovfracht website. The man said they considered the value of Faina’s load much greater then the value of the ship itself, so they wanted the owner of the weapons to pay for their return.

The web-site also said earlier media reports that claimed the pirates had cut the ransom for the ship and its crew to $8 million were ‘absolutely groundless’.

The vessel was captured by Somalian pirates on September 25 off the Kenyan coast. The ship was transporting arms including tanks, multiple rocket-launch systems, ammunition and other weapons to either Kenya or Sudan according to various sources.

The delivery is subject to a parliamentary investigation in Ukraine along with other arms contracts. The commission suspects many of the deals lacked transparency or were illegal."

I think the problem is no one wants to admit they own this cargo. Ukraine probably shouldn't have exported it, Kenya says they are the importer, but all indications are it is actually destined to southern Sudan. I have read one report claiming the owner of the vessel is Israeli. All of these people are probably thinking it wouldn't be a bad idea if this ship did get blown up (as long as the crew was safe).

It's like the old game "hot potato".

I guess the pirates have figured out that no one wants to negotiate, so they have decided to say they will blow up the ship as a means to force someone to negotiate.

The problem is, I think this will just be a good excuse for force to be used against them.

The Russian warship Neustrashimy is on it's way, but there are no reports of it's exact position. Russia had claimed it would be put into service off the coast of Somalia early Nov., but it really should be arriving before that.

Maybe this will be one time the Americans and the Russians can act together to free the M/V Faina and it's crew. Well, let's hope for at least the crew. Having all that military equipment destroyed probably wouldn't be a bad thing.

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