Pirates demand $7.5m ransom for Sri Lankan fishermen

The wife of missing Sri Lankan fisherman Shantha
 Sebastian displays her husband’s identity, as her
 child cries at her residence in Negombo, Sri Lanka,
 Wednesday, Feb 1, 2012. — PHOTO: AP
( February 03, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian)  Families say Somali pirates are demanding US$6 million (S$7.5 million) for the release of six Sri Lankan fishermen who were abducted three months ago.
Mr Niroshan Anthony said on Wednesday his brother and the other fishermen set out to sea in Negombo on Sri Lanka’s west coast last September for multi-day fishing, but contact with the vessel was lost after one month. Anthony is the older brother of abducted fisherman Shantha Sebastian.
‘They have threatened to kill my brother and let us hear the gunfire on the phone if the money is not paid by Friday,’ said Mr Anthony, adding that his family is unable even to meet their basic needs.
Fisheries Minister Rajitha Senaratne confirmed the pirate attack but said the Somali government has not been able to secure the fishermen’s release.- AP

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Author: Sri Lanka Guardian

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