9 pirates arrested in Seychelles

April 29, 2009 at 1:21 AM

NEW DELHI, April 29 (UPI) -- An Indian naval vessel, working with Spanish and French ships on pirate patrol near the Seychelles, captured nine suspected pirates, officials said Tuesday.

The suspects were handed over to authorities in the Republic of Seychelles, Press Trust of India reported. They were arrested Sunday night.

The Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean, northeast of Madagascar and more than 900 miles from the African coast. The government asked for assistance from India after pirates who had been operating off Somalia moved to the Seychelles because of the number of naval vessels now patrolling the Gulf of Aden.

The INS Nirdeshak, a survey vessel, the Spanish destroyer Nomansia and French reconnaissance aircraft were involved in the operation.

The Nirdeshak was already involved in a survey off the Seychelles when it was deployed to pirate duty.

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