Swede caught in Somali pirate attack

A Swedish man was caught up in an attack by Somali pirates on Saturday. The pirates attacked an Italian cruise ship outside of Somalia's coast but were repelled.

The Italian cruise ship Melody was on its way to Aqaba in Jordan when it was attacked by a party of six pirates in a small speed boat and armed with Kalashnikov rifles.

Security staff onboard the ship returned fire and repelled the pirates, the ship’s captain Ciro Pinto confirmed to Italian news agency Ansa.

Petra Hansson at the foreign ministry in Stockholm confirmed that a Swedish man was among the 991 passengers and 536 crew when it came under attack.

The waters outside of Somali has become increasingly dangerous in recent months with a slew of attacks against shipping in the area. Most of the attacks so far have however been directed against commercial vessels.

The Swedish man onboard the ship sent a text message to his son in Sweden who in turn contacted the foreign ministry.

According to the son his father had boarded the ship in Cape Town and was on his way to Genoa in Italy when the pirates caught up with the cruise ship north of the Seychelles.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Swedish citizen appointed next prime minister of Somalia

A Swedish-Somali engineer has been named the new prime minister of Somalia after his predecessor was ousted by a no-confidence vote.

Swedish citizen appointed next prime minister of Somalia
Mohamed Hussein Roble, centre, came to Sweden in 1992 and got his citizenship five years later. Photo: Somali Presidents' Office
Mohamed Hussein Roble came to Sweden in 1992, shortly after the armed coup that thrust the country into its long civil war. He became a Swedish citizen five years later. 
In 2000, he gained his masters in Environmental Technology and Sustainable Infrastructure from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. 
Most recently, he has been working for the International Labour Organisation in Nairobi, Kenya. 
Roble's appointment was announced by President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed on Friday, with Abdinur Mohamed, his deputy chief of staff tweeting out a picture of the new prime minister on Friday. 
The appointment still needs to be confirmed by a vote of country's parliament. 
In a statement, President Farmajo called on Roble to “immediately form a capable government that will lead the country to elections and make significant efforts to consolidate security gains, rebuild the armed forces, develop infrastructure, expand basic services.”