Release of Togo-flag MV Sea Horse
Pirates have released the Togo-flag MV Sea Horse, which then docked at the Kenya's port of Mombasa. The ship would undergo some repairs as the engine was malfunctioning and receive supplies.
The Togo-flagged ship seized by pirates "off the Horn of Africa" "east of Mogadishu" April 14 with 19 crew as it headed to India to pick up more than 7,000 tons of U.N. food. The Sea Horse tried to get help, radioing its predicament to the HMCS Winnipeg. It was too late. By the time the helicopter reached the ship it was under pirate control.
The food aid freighter left after US $100,000 was paid by "Somali businessmen" "Somali traders were involved in the release of this ship. They mediated and paid some money. I think it was not more than $100,000," "after two Dubai-based Somali businessmen intervened and paid off the pirates"( or maybe "the owner of the ship paid about 200,000 dollars"). The Lebanese operator, Sealink SARL, said the ship's owner was a Syrian national and could not confirm the amount of the ransom. A piracy expert , said "since the Sea Horse had no cargo yet, it was probably less valuable anyway."
"There are bullet marks on the walls and some window panes have been shattered. The pirates stole 20,000 U.S. dollars in cash from the crew and took all their clothes,"
Somali clan elder Abdisalan Khalif Ahmed from the Somali pirate haven of Harardhere, said gunmen released the ship after they found out it was supposed to pick up food for their own countrymen.
In sum, the small vessel recently sailing under an assortment of flags, was offered to and accepted by the World Food Programme, sailed from the Med to Gaan/Harardhere "empty" en route to India 2,193 miles away, to return with 7,000 tons of grain.