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Thursday 7 December 2023 Dublin: 10°C
Government of India / AP Indian naval officers distribute food to the captured pirates aboard an Indian naval ship in the Arabian Sea.

Indian navy captures 61 pirates in Arabian Sea

A hijacked fishing boat from Mozambique is reclaimed after Indian ships exchange gunfire, a military statement says.

THE INDIAN NAVY says it has captured 61 pirates from a hijacked boat after a brief gunfight in the Arabian Sea.

Indian ships also rescued 13 crew members from the Mozambiquan fishing vessel Sunday night nearly 695 miles (1,100 kilometers) off the coast of Kochi in southern India, the navy’s statement said.

The navy was checking whether the pirates were from Somalia or Yemen.

Piracy has plagued the shipping industry off East Africa for years, but violence and ransom demands have escalated in recent months. Pirates held some 30 ships and more than 660 hostages as of February.

This was the third anti-piracy operation by the Indian navy this year. The navy captured 28 Somali pirates last month and another 15 in January.

Indian warships have been escorting merchant ships through the area since 2008 as part of international anti-piracy patrols.

- AP