Pirates Free Cargo Ship Near Somalia, One Crewman Dead

June 25, 2009

The Dutch Defense Ministry said Somali pirates have released a hijacked cargo ship aboard which one crew member was fatally shot.

The ministry said Dutch marines are escorting the MV Marathon to a safe port.

It also said one of the 19 crew members died of a gunshot wound sustained when pirates seized the ship on May 7. Another crew member was injured, but the ministry did not give details of his condition. Dutch media said the crew members are Ukrainian.

The ministry said in a statement Tuesday that the Dutch Antilles-flagged ship is being shepherded to port by Dutch navy frigate The Seven Provinces, which is part of a NATO flotilla patrolling the Gulf of Aden.

The statement did not say if a ransom was paid.

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