Somali pirates have released a Turkish freighter, the MV Frigia, four months after the vessel was hijacked, with all 21 crewmembers reported to be safe and healthy, a lawyer for the ship’s operator said on Thursday.
The Maltese-flagged cargo ship was seized off the Indian coast with a crew of 19 Turks and two Ukrainians on March 23.
“The captain told us all crewmembers … were pleased and excited after the recent developments and that everybody was healthy and safe,” lawyer Nilgün Yamaner told the Anatolia news agency.
The freighter was released at 7:25 a.m. Turkish time and was sailing to meet the Turkish frigate the TCG Gelibolu off the coast of Somalia, she said. The Turkish Maritime Undersecretariat said it would head to the Omani port of Salalah. The MV Frigia was hijacked 1,000 nautical miles east of the northern coast of Somalia. The 35,000-ton ship had been closer to India than Somalia and some 400 nautical miles outside the normal counter-piracy EU Naval Force (NAVFOR) operation area.