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|24 Crew Members Of Korean Vessel Taken Hostage In Kismayo|
Mombassa, Kenya, May 04 (Zee News) - Somali warlords are holding hostage 24 crew members of a Korean-registered fishing vessel, Beira 9, near Somalia's southern port of Kismayo, Kenya Seafearers Assistance Programme (KSAP) official Andrew Mwangura said here today.
The Somali warlords are demanding three months fishing dues and unspecified amount of money for security services they provided to the vessel and its sister ship, FV Beira 3, while on a three-month fishing expedition in Somalia's territorial waters, Mwangura said.
Maritime sources could not immediately establish the fate of FV Beira 3, saying "normally vessels don't sail back to Mombassa port, but sail straight back home after finishing their fishing expeditions."
The sources said that the ill-fated vessels, owned by Mozko limited of Korea, "most probably came from South Korea, because Somali waters are mostly fished by vessels from South Korea."
The seafarers, who have now been in captivity for 33 days, include three Koreans, four Chinese, five Vietnamese and 12 Kenyans.
FV Beira 9 and FV Beira 3 left the Kenyan port of Mombassa last January for a three-month fishing expedition in Somali waters, maritime sources here said.