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December 27, 2010

Thoresen Thai ship hijacked

Somali pirate activity continues at a high level. EU NAVFOR reports that in the early hours of December 25, the MV THOR NEXUS was pirated approximately 450 nautical miles northeast of the island of Socotra in the Indian Ocean.

Shipowner Thoresen Thai Agencies PCL (TTA) said today that the hijacking is believed to have taken place approximately 700 kilometers east of Salalah, Oman. The Thor Nexus is a 220,377 deadweight ton multipurpose cargo ship and was carrying bagged agricultural products en route from the United Arab Emirates to Bangladesh.

"In line with established Thoresen and globally accepted best management practices, all Thoresen vessels are obligated to deploy anti-piracy measures and undertake evasive maneuvers to avoid being hijacked. No further details are currently available on how the pirates were able to board her," said the statement.

"TTA has not yet received any direct contact or demand from the hijackers," continued the statement. "We are considering all options as the Thor Nexus sails towards Somali waters. TTA will engage in negotiations, as necessary, to secure the safe release of the crew and vessel. For the safety of our crew, we will not comment on any ransom demand made by the hijackers, nor will we comment on TTA's level or type of insurance coverage so that we can ensure negotiations can be kept to the point."

"Our foremost priority is to get the crew home safely. All measures and assistance that can be had are being directed to ensure that our crew is released unharmed. We are working closely with the Royal Thai Navy and other maritime authorities to achieve this outcome," said David Ames, TTA's Executive Vice President, Transport Group.


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