FAINA “FREED AFTER RANSOM PAID”
Thursday, 05 February 2009
ACCORDING to reports Somali pirates have freed the Ukrainian-owned, Belize-flag cargo ro-ro Faina, hijacked in September, following payment of a ransom deal which is believed to have been about US$3,2m.
Reports say the pirates have left the vessel and that it is sailing from the area under the protection of US warships.
Negotiations for the release of the Faina, whose cargo includes ex-Soviet era tanks and other armaments, have been exceptionally difficult and protracted.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has welcomed the release of the Faina vessel hijacked by Somali pirates.
Ukraine based Kyiv News has reported that Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Igor Lyakin-Frolov has told Interfax: “We welcome the release of the sailors, the crew members of the Faina vessel. It is good that all the sailors, among whom there are Russian citizens, are reportedly safe and sound. We hope that the Russian sailors will come home and rejoin their families soon. The Russian Foreign Ministry has undertaken all necessary steps within its purview to help release the crew.” link