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Saturday
Feb192011

Somali Pirates Hijack American Yacht on Indian Ocean Voyage

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(SALALAH, Oman) -- U.S. officials confirm that a yacht with four Americans aboard has been seized by Somali pirates in the waters of the Indian Ocean.

The advocacy group Ecoterra International says its monitoring of regional maritime activity off the coast of East Africa indicates four Americans aboard the yacht S/V Quest were seized by pirates 240 nautical miles off the coast of Oman.

Lt. Commander Susie Thomson, a spokesperson for the Combined Maritime Forces that patrol the waters of the Middle East, confirmed the Quest incident, but could provide no details.

A U.S. official said, "We are still looking at what the options are."

The 58-foot S/V Quest is owned by Jean and Scott Adam, who have been sailing the boat around the world for the past seven years. As they approached the notoriously hostile waters off the Horn of Africa, the Adams cut back using their radios and satellite systems so their location couldn't be tracked by pirates, but they were still found.

The Adams are members of the Del Rey Yacht Club in Marina Del Rey, California.

Pirate seizures have continued in the waters off East Africa despite the constant patrols of by the world's navies, including ships from the United States. It is believed that Somali pirates currently have 29 ships in their possession and are holding 660 crewmembers hostage.  

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