Puntland Forces Free 22 Crew from MV Iceberg 1 – Held Hostage for 33 Months by Somali Pirates

MV Iceberg 1

Wonderful news. Forces of Somalia’s semiautonomous Puntland region are reported to have raided the MV Iceberg I on Sunday and to have rescued 22 officers and crew who had been held hostage by Somali pirates for 33 months.  The Puntland forces had laid siege to the ship for close to two weeks near the coastal village of Gara’ad in Mudung region.  As we posted last October, the Panamanian-flagged ro/ro MV Iceburg 1 was hijacked by pirates about 10 nautical miles off the port of Aden, Yemen on March 29, 2010. Her crew of 24, of which 22 are believed to have survived, have been held hostage for 29 months. The ship’s owner Dubai-based Azal Shipping & Cargo has been accused of effectively abandoning the ship and her crew. One of the crew members, Wagdi Akram, committed suicide on October 27, 2010 by jumping overboard. The ship’s chief engineer is believed to have been killed by the pirates in March or June of 2011.

Captives of Somali pirates freed after nearly 3 years

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