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Indonesia-bound Thai tanker believed hijacked

KUALA LUMPUR - A Thai tanker is thought to have been hijacked on its way from Singapore to Indonesia, the International Maritime Bureau said on Saturday, following a number of pirate attacks in Southeast Asian waters.

The diesel oil tanker MT Orapin 4, with 14 crew aboard, lost contact with its owner after departing the city-state on Tuesday, IMB’s Kuala Lumpur-based Piracy Reporting Centre said. It was heading to Pontianak on Indonesia’s Kalimantan.

"It’s a possible hijacking," the centre’s head Noel Choong said, adding that pirates recently had attacked a number of vessels in the area, usually to siphon off cargo. The centre urged other vessels to keep a look-out for the missing tanker.

In April, heavily-armed pirates boarded another Thailand-owned tanker off the eastern coast of Malaysia, injuring the captain and stealing diesel fuel from its cargo.

AFP


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