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Somali pirates hit oil tanker

The European Union Naval Force says Somali pirates have launched an attack on an oil tanker farther out at sea than any previous assault.

world Updated: Nov 09, 2009 20:54 IST

The European Union Naval Force says Somali pirates have launched an attack on an oil tanker farther out at sea than any previous assault.

The force says pirates in two skiffs fired automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades at the Hong Kong- flagged BW Lion about 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) east of the Somali coast on Monday. The tanker's captain increased speed and took evasive maneuvers. The ship avoided the attack and no casualties were reported. The naval force sent a plane from the Seychelles islands to investigate. Pirates have launched increasingly bold attacks against vessels in the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden in hopes of capturing a ship and crew and collecting ransom.