Dozens of fighters from the Hizbul Islam group rolled into Haradhere on Sunday. Pirates piled their big screen TVs into the luxury cars they had bought with ransom payments and drove off, avoiding a clash. At least four hijacked ships anchored near Haradhere moved toward Hobyo, another pirate den, said Haradhere resident Osman Gure.John McCreary, or rather one of his readers, comments:
The head of operations for Hizbul Islam, Sheik Mohamed Abdi Aros, told The Associated Press his fighters have not come across any hostages yet but if that they did the militants would release them along with any hijacked ships. Pirates hold more than 300 hostages taken from ships attacked off East Africa the last several months.
"Hizbul Islam came here to install in this region and fight piracy, which we consider un-Islamic," Aros said by phone. "We hope to curb the dirty business."
Feedback from one well informed and brilliant Reader noted that the price for ending piracy might be the conversion of Somalia into a haven for international terrorism, in lieu of piracy.On the other hand, some analysts also suggest that it wouldn't be too surprising if Hizbul Islam managed to come to some sort of working arrangement with the pirates down the road, a la the Afghan Taliban and the opium trade. Piracy is big business on the Somali coast and after all, most of its targets are western businesses.
|SOMALIA: Pirate Paradise Persists|