UK and US forces 'rescue pirate-held Italian ship'

Jos

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British and US naval forces freed an Italian ship from Somali pirates after hostages threw an SOS message in a bottle from a porthole, Italy's defence minister has said.

Ignazio La Russa said the 23 hostages had locked themselves in the strong room of the 56,000-tonne Montecristo.

The bulk carrier had been seized 620 miles (1,000km) off Somalia on Monday.

The Royal Navy met no resistance on boarding it and detained 11 suspected pirates, UK defence officials said.

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