It is indeed a Happy Easter for Maersk ship “Alabama” Capt. Richard Phillips, who has been held hostage by Somali pirates for the past few days. It is been reported that earlier today Capt. Phillips has been rescued by U.S forces when a firefight took place that killed 3 out of the 4 pirates that were holding him.
The New York Times has the story:
MOMBASA, Kenya (AP) — An American ship captain was freed unharmed Sunday in a swift firefight that killed three of the four Somali pirates who had been holding him for days in a lifeboat off the coast of Africa, the ship’s owner said.
A senior U.S. intelligence official said a pirate who had been involved in negotiations to free Capt. Richard Phillips but who was not on the lifeboat was in custody.
Phillips, 53, of Underhill, Vermont, was safely transported to a Navy warship nearby.
Maersk Line Limited President and CEO John Reinhart said in a news release that the U.S. government informed the company around 1:30 p.m. EDT Sunday that Phillips had been rescued. Reinhart said the company called Phillips’ wife, Andrea, to tell her the news.
The U.S. official was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. A Pentagon spokesman had no immediate comment.
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