The Commanders of a group of pirates who are currently holding 24 persons captive including 4 Ghanaians in Somalia who were aboard the MV Iceberg 1 are agitated about the non-compliance to their demand and have threatened worse moments for the crew.
The captives communicated the intention of the pirates through a text message to Citi FM.
According to the pirates, if their demands are not met immediately, they would be forced to kill the captives and make away with some of their body parts which they say are more expensive than the ransom.
“Hi, this is to inform you that the hijacker of MV Iceberg 1 has come out unkind, inhuman and terrible decision last night. Immediately after one of their commanders arrived on board, he said officially that if they don’t get their ransom ASAP they will slaughter us and remove our kidneys and hearts which are even high than the cost of ransom they are requesting.
Kindly forward this urgent news to all other embassies in Nairobi and human right watch worldwide ASAP”. Text message from the captives.
In an interview with one of the captured Ghanaians on board the MV Iceberg 1, he confirmed the content of the text message and pleaded for help.
“The situation is that we are very sad today because three days ago one man came who they say is the commander and they came with the decision that they are going to slaughter us and remove our kidneys and sell them…the health situation is very bad because people are suffering from cough, diarrhoea, some dangerous skin diseases and others are also suffering from spinal cord problem…we are suffering please it is becoming unbearable. Please help us.”
The 24 people including six Indians, nine Yemenis, two Sudanese, a Philippine and 4 Ghanaians, were captured on the high seas in March 2010.
The activities of pirates off the Somali coast have been a threat to international shipping since the second phase of the Somali Civil War in the early 21st century. Since 2005, many international organizations, including the International Maritime Organization and the World Food Programme, have expressed concern over the rise in the operation.