The crew following their release.
Good news was well received last week when word broke that seven hostages that had been held by pirates in Somalia since September 28, 2010 had finally been released.
All the crew on board the cargo ship MV Asphalt Venture were hijacked four years ago by Somali pirates, the vessel was also seized. This incident occurred approximately 100 nautical miles South-East of Dar Es Salaam in the Somali Basin. In April 2011, after the vessel owner paid a multi-million dollar ransom, the vessel and eight crew members were released. The pirates didn’t keep to their word (if you can’t trust a pirate, who can you trust?) and they kept seven Indian crew members hostage. All this was in retaliation for arrests that had been made (at the time) of over 100 Somali pirates by the Indian Navy.
So after over four years being held captive the crew members were released following payment of a modest amount, which covers the logistical and transport cost of the pirate group.
This would be the best hair cut ever. The men also met with the Indian High Commissioner in Kenya.
The men have now been returned to India (via Kenya). They have received physical examinations, well needed new haircuts and a shave. They have also now been able to see their families and have attempted to catch up on the last four years of life that they have missed out on.
According to some reports, the release of the Asphalt Venture hostages means that there are no remaining crews from container ships, bulk carriers or tankers being held in Somalia.