Pirates hijacked a Greek-owned bulk carrier on Thursday in the Gulf of Aden near Yemen, a Kenyan maritime official said on Sunday.
"Red Sea Spirit was taken by gunmen off the Yemeni coast last on Thursday. She is flying the Panama flag," said Andrew Mwangura, coordinator of the Kenya-based East African Seafarers' Assistance Programme. "She is a Greek-owned bulk carrier." News of the seizure only emerged on Saturday, he said.
Somali pirates have continued to defy foreign navies patrolling the waters off the Horn of Africa and are holding at least 13 vessels and more than 200 crew. There was a pause in hijackings during monsoon rains, but the sea gangs have stepped up attacks in the past two months, extending their range to as far as the Seychelles, to evade the naval vessels.