A U.S. warship captured five suspected pirates on Thursday after an exchange of fire in the Indian Ocean west of the Seychelles, the U.S. navy said.
After the clash, the U.S. warship chased the suspected pirate ship, which had been damaged, until it stopped, it said. It captured three pirates on the skiff and another two on the mother ship.
"USS Nicholas captured suspected pirates on Thursday after exchanging fire, sinking a skiff, and confiscating a suspected mother ship," the U.S. Navy said in a statement. It did not say whether the pirates were Somalis.
Pirate sources and a maritime source said that a Taiwanese ship had also been hijacked on Thursday.
"My colleagues captured a Taiwanese ship after a hard chase today," a pirate named Hassan told Reuters. "They were two ships travelling together but one sped off."
Andrew Mwangura of the Kenya-based East Africa Seafarers Assistance Programme said the Taiwanese ship Jin-chun Tsai 68 could have indeed been captured.
Somali pirates are seizing ships as far as the Mozambique Channel and off the coast of India and have started targeting ships bringing merchandise to Mogadishu's port.
They are holding captive at least eight mechanised Indian dhows, or small boats. Seven of them, with 100 crew members, were hijacked over the weekend on their way to the United Arab Emirates from Somalia.
Another dhow, the Al-Barari, was seized on Wednesday after discharging its cargo in Mogadishu.
ReutersGüncelleme Tarihi: 01 Nisan 2010, 23:38