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Report: Somalia pirates release tanker

June 9, 2012 at 2:03 PM

MOGADISHU, Somalia, June 9 (UPI) -- A Greek-owned chemical tanker has apparently been released by Somali pirates who captured the vessel in October, sources told the Web site Somalia Report.

The Liquid Velvet and its 21 Filipino crew members set sail for Oman Thursday after the pirates claimed to have collected a $4 million ransom, Somalia Report said Saturday.

There was no immediate confirmation from Elmira Tankers in Athens, operators of the vessel.

The Liquid Velvet was taken over by a boatload of pirates Oct. 31. The raiders were believed to be associated with a notorious pirate leader from Somalia's Bari region named Aw-Kambe.

Somalia Report said Liquid Velvet, which weighs nearly 6,000 metric tons, was sailing for India with an unspecified cargo when it was attacked after clearing the Suez Canal. The pirates had originally demanded $8 million ransom for the release of the ship.

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