The Danish warship Absalon has freed 18 hostages from Somali pirates but two hostages died in connection with the operation that targeted a pirate mother ship off the Somali coast, according to Admiral Fleet Denmark.
The Danish Judge Advocate is to investigate the incident to determine how the two hostages died.
According to the report, the Absalon had been shadowing a pirate mother ship for some days. On Sunday night, the vessel attempted to make out from the Somali coast into the open sea.
Warning shots and repeated orders for the vessel to stop were ignored, whereupon NATO command gave the Absalon orders to fire at materiel on the vessel, at which point pirates on board surrendered.
On board the vessel, Absalon crew found 17 suspected pirates and 18 hostages, two of whom were seriously wounded. Although given immediate treatment by Absalon medical staff, the two died.
“We cannot deny that it may have been us that caused the deaths. That is why we have called in the Judge Advicate to determine what happened,” says naval Captain Steen Engelbrecht Pedersen of Admiral Fleet Denmark.
The nationalities and identities of the freed hostages have not yet been released.
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Edited by Julian Isherwood