MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) - A Somali pirate spokesman says his group will not release a hijacked Ukrainian cargo ship loaded with arms for less than $20 million.
Sugule Ali told the Associated Press on Thursday the pirates would "never" reduce the ransom of the Ukrainian freighter loaded with 33 Soviet-designed tanks and other weapons. The MV Faina was seized last Thursday and is now anchored off the coast of central Somalia.
The pirates have been negotiating with the ship's owners. There are 20 crew aboard the ship.
Ali warned that any attempt at deception or commando raids on the ship would be met with repercussions.
Amused as I am by pirates having spokesmen and demanding ransom as opposed to drinking wenches, I have to consider the logistics of comandeering a vessel with cased and munition-free weapons on board. And maintaining the demand for a $20M ransom while the Russian Navy is standing by to blow you the fuck out of the water. Offhand, I'd say it's a pretty untenable position.
Then again, I don't make my living by boarding cargo ships and taking them over.
They've had the ship for a week now. Apparently, there has been some success among pirates in getting ransom for ships and crew after about a month.
Personally, I think that there should be a multinational contingent of stealth ships packed with ninjas sent into the waters in that area to combat the pirates.