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Ukrainian ship standoff enters 96th day

Dec. 29, 2008 at 12:38 PM
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MOGADISHU, Somalia, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- Negotiations between Somali pirates and the owners of the hijacked Ukrainian ship MV Faina reached their 96th day Monday with no resolution, observers said.

After more than three months under siege in the Gulf of Aden, the Faina standoff continued Monday amid intense negotiations, the German non-governmental organization Ecoterra International reported.

Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Minister Volodymyr Ohryzko has indicated he's hopeful a deal can be reached with the pirates before the end of the year, which included only two more days, the group said.

The Faina, carrying 33 Soviet-made T-72 tanks, rocket-propelled grenades and anti-aircraft guns, allegedly to Kenya, was hijacked Sept. 25 by approximately 50 Somali pirates, who say they were unaware of the ship's cargo when they commandeered it.

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