Hijacked lifeboat with US captain near Somali shore: Report

April 12th, 2009 - 6:45 am ICT by IANS  

Washington, April 12 (DPA) Somali pirates were reported to have obtained fuel for their hijacked lifeboat and were moving within 35 km of Somalia’s shore late Saturday with the kidnapped US captain of a US-operated cargo ship, ABC news and CNN reported.
Navy officials have said they would not allow the small lifeboat, in which captain Richard Phillips of the Maersk Alabama is being held hostage, to reach the shore, CNN reported.

The development would indicate that the pirates have obtained fuel since Thursday, when the lifeboat stolen from the Alabama was reported to be in a standoff with the USS Bainbridge 500 km off the Somali shore.

In Washington, a Pentagon official told DPA the defence department was not releasing any information about the situation, indicating serious concern about the fate of Phillips.

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