Gemini Four Freed

Four South Korean sailors abducted from a chemical tanker by Somali pirates 19 months ago were released on Saturday.

The 30,000–dwt Gemini (built 1986), along with its 25 crew, was hijacked on 30 April 2011 while en route to Malaysia from Kenya.

Pirates freed the vessel seven months later along with the 21 non-Korean sailors, but kept the four Koreans captive.

“All four (South Korean) sailors have been freed on Saturday,” a statement from the South Korea’s Foreign Ministry confirmed.

The sailors, who are now on a South Korean navy destroyer, would return to Seoul by air once health checks and other procedures were completed.

There was no information on whether a ransom had been paid. The vessel, which has since been scrapped, was operated by Singapore-based Glory Ship Management.

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