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article imageUS Marines storm ship taken by pirates

By Christopher Szabo     Sep 10, 2010 in World
Mogadishu - US Marines have stormed a ship held by pirates in the Gulf of Aden, capturing nine men suspected of piracy after joint naval forces shadowed the captured ship. This is believed to be the first time US troops have taken a pirated ship by force.
The Motor Vessel (MV) Magellan Star, a German-owned commercial ship was about 130 kilometres (85 miles) south of the Yemeni town of Al Mukalla, when 24 Marines from the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit's Maritime Raiding Force boarded the ship, according to ABC News.
The teams were stationed aboard the USS Dubuque, an “amphibious transport dock ship” capable of carrying helicopters and combined weapons systems.
The pirates had captured the vessel Wednesday, September 8, but the Turkish frigate TCG Gökçeada, arrived on the scene and began shadowing the MV Magellan Star. The Turkish frigate is also flagship of Combined Task Force (CTF) 151, the NATO-based counter-piracy force in the region Two additional warships, USS Dubuque and USS Princeton arrived on the scene soon after.
When the attack went in on Thursday, September 9, the suspected pirates, who were armed with AK 47 automatic rifles were surprised and offered no resistance.
Spokesperson for the US Navy Fifth Fleet Commander Amy Derrick-Frost said in Bahrain the raid: "Went down in minutes ... and no shots were fired."
Derrick-Frost added:
"The smartest move is not to react in a hostile way and they surrendered."
There were no casualties on either side and the nine suspects are now in the hands of CTF 151. The 11 crew members, who had been in the ship’s safety room, were released.
The US Navy’s official website quoted the CTF commander, Rear Admiral Sinan Ertugrul of the Turkish Navy, who had this to say:
"Units from the multi-national maritime force, under Combined Task Force 151, are actively engaged in anti-piracy operations. This regional problem, truly, has global impact and we are completely committed to bringing the disruptive acts of piracy to an end. We have full support of the international community and will continue to do everything possible to bring security to the Gulf of Aden and Somali Basin."
American naval forces have used force against pirates before, but this is believed to be the first time they took back a captured ship. Earlier this year, Dutch commandos recaptured another German-owned ship.
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