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Somali pirates hijack fourth vessel in a week

The St. James Park, pictured above, was captured earlier in the week off Somalia.
The St. James Park, pictured above, was captured earlier in the week off Somalia.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • UK Foreign Office: No British nationals aboard British-flagged Asian Glory
  • Somali pirates seized Singaporean-flagged chemical tanker M/V Pramoni Friday
  • Two other vessels -- one British-flagged, the other Greek-owned -- taken in past week

(CNN) -- Pirates off Somalia have hijacked two more vessels in the Gulf of Aden, the European Union naval force said Saturday -- the third and fourth vessels they have captured this week.

The British-flagged Asian Glory was seized off Somalia late Friday, the naval force said. The nationality of the pirates was unclear, because the hijacking happened outside of the force's operations area, it said.

The British Foreign Office would not confirm the hijacking, but said no British nationals were aboard.

Also Friday, Somali pirates seized the Singaporean-flagged chemical tanker M/V Pramoni, also in the Gulf of Aden, the naval force said. The 20,000-ton chemical tanker was carrying a crew of 24 and was heading to Kandla, India, when attacked, the naval force said.

The crew consists of 17 Indonesians, five Chinese, one Nigerian and one Vietnamese, the naval force said. The ship's master reported all the crew were well after the hijacking, the naval force said.

The ship was heading toward Somalia after the hijacking, the naval force said.

Chart: Piracy incidents up in 2009
RELATED TOPICS
  • Somali Pirates
  • Somalia

The Asian Glory is owned by London-based Zodiac Maritime Agencies, according to Lloyd's Register of Ships. Zodiac also owns another vessel that was hijacked in the Gulf of Aden, the British-flagged chemical tanker St. James Park, according to the company's Web site.

The St. James Park has a crew of 26, consisting of Bulgarians, Filipinos, Georgians, Indians, Poles, Romanians, Russians, Turks and Ukrainians, the EU naval force said.

The vessel had arrived at the Somali port of Hobyo, a pirate stronghold, the naval force said Saturday.

Monday, pirates also hijacked the Greek-owned carrier Navios Apollon, the naval force said.

It had been heading for Thailand, but was on its way to the Somali coast after the hijacking, it said.

CNN's Per Nyberg in London, England, contributed to this report.

 
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