Nov. 26 – The Chinese bulk carrier De Xin Han is expected to be freed within days after Cosco Qingdao apparently agreed to pay a US$3.5million ransom to the Somali pirates who kidnapped the vessel last month, according to the South China Morning Post.
A spokesman for the company was quoted as saying that an agreement had been reached. The ship was hijacked on October 19 and was taken to Hobyo, on the central Somali coast. The ship had a crew of 25.
A second Cosco ship narrowly escaped capture just two weeks ago when the Fu Qiang successfully evaded pirates though suffering gunshot injuries to the crew. The ship returned to port in Guangzhou this past weekend. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cosco have refused to comment on the hijackings.