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Nigerian tugboat freed by Somali pirates

MOGADISHU, Somalia, June 6 (UPI) -- The Dutch Defense Ministry said Saturday a Nigerian tugboat has been released by Somali pirates after being held for 10 months.

The ministry said in a statement the Yenegoa Ocean tugboat and its crew were released by the pirates Friday and the Nigerian vessel was escorted to a safe harbor by a Dutch navy frigate, CNN reported.

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The ministry said in addition to escorting the released vessel, Dutch forces were also offering logistical and medical aid.

The Panamanian-flagged Yenegoa Ocean was captured by Somali pirates on Aug. 4, 2008, as it was traveling from Singapore.

CNN said no injuries were reported among the vessel's crew members.

The Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia currently tops the world in regards to the risk of piracy, CNN said.

The high piracy risk in the gulf comes despite the increasing presence of multinational vessels to protect ships traveling through the region.

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