Somali official: Sino-pirate talks to free captives going well

Time:2009-11-17 Browse:13 Author:RISINGSUN

SOMALI government officials say talks with pirates to free 25 Chinese seafarers are proceeding well and their release is expected in six to eight weeks, reports Hong Kong`s South China Morning Post.
Ismail Haji Noor, head of the piracy division of the Somali government, said all the crewmembers were in good health when they met officials to check.
The Somali government is not involved in the negotiations, but Mr Noor said talks were proceeding faster than usual.
Pirates have captured six China-linked ships off Somalia in the last year and the crews were usually released three months, once ransoms were paid, reckoned at US$1 million to $2 million.
A fourth Chinese naval squadron has arrived in the Gulf of Aden to protect ships from Somali pirates, who seized two more ships this week.