The commanding officer of a US Navy warship monitors the pirated vessel off the coast of Somalia on September 30. Pirates holding a Ukrainian ship — carrying tanks and military hardware with 21-member crew — off the coast of Somalia said that a deal could soon be reached for the vessel’s release.(AFP/US Navy/File/Jason R. Zalasky)
Separately, officials said other pirates in Somalia have released 15 Filipino seamen and four other crewmen seized when a Japanese-operated chemical tanker was hijacked nearly two months ago. But pirates still hold 67 Filipino sailors on four different ships.
And NATO defense ministers meeting in Hungary have agreed to send ships to the area soon, a diplomat said.