Four Americans held on hijacked yacht killed by Somali “pirates”

On Tuesday, February 22, four American hostages hijacked by Somali pirates off the coast of Oman have been killed, U.S. defense officials say. The yacht, owned and sailed by Scott and Jean Adam of California, and accompanied by couple Phyllis Macay and Bob Riggle, was hijacked while the two couples were sailing though Somalia’s pirate infested seas.

Scott and Jean Adam first set sail on the 58-foot Quest in 2002.

According to the US military, four Navy warships – including an aircraft carrier – had been carefully shadowing the hijacked yacht, called the Quest, for days, hoping to prevent the pirates from disembarking with the hostages. They were in the process of negotiating with the pirates, when Navy Seals rushed to the yacht in assult craft after hearing gunshots fired from the boat. It has been said by military officials that the Navy Seals killed two pirates while trying to take control of the ship. “As they responded to the gunfire, reaching and boarding the Quest, the forces discovered all four hostages had been shot by their captors,” Gen James Mattis of US Central Command Commander stated.It is still unclear why the pirates killed the hostages, however Maritime analysts suppose either accidentally during a firefight, or possibly out of revenge for the Somali pirates killed by American forces during a similar hostage situation in 2009. We do know, however, that Somalia has not had a functioning government since 1991, allowing piracy to flourish off its coast. The New York Times reassures that the U.S. Navy captured a total of 13 pirates; killed two, and found the remains of two already dead on the boat.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-12541297

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/23/world/africa/23pirates.html?pagewanted=1&ref=us

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