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Dhafoor and Yulux are believed to be the pirates who captured and held the Danish yachting family until they were ransomed for between $2 and $4 million US dollars. Dhafoor is also being held of charges of ambushing and murdering five and injuring eleven Puntland government security forces members in Hul Anod in March 2011. Dhafoor sustained a minor leg wound in the security operation, there were no other wounded. Although Dhafoor appears in our photo with a bandage on his leg. The government insists no one was wounded. Minister Khalif Issa Mudan who is in Hafun, said that he is in the town, everything is peaceful “that is rumors, no one injured, no one died and the troops are in the city peacefully".
Six of the arrested pirates names were released:
Suspected commander, Maxed Maxud Maxed "Dhafoor" (36), and suspects Khalif Salah Sicid (35), Clsalaan Ahmed Hassan (29), Ayaanle Said Mahamed (40), Abdi Said Mahamed (30), and Abdrizak Ibrahm Ali (19).
Entry into the remote coast area of Hafun was not easy. Locals had forged alliances with pirate groups and held long standing enmity against the government of Puntland. They accused the Puntland government of not providing the basics in the remote region which had led to their association, even by marriage, with known criminals.
The region has long been a base for pirates due to its strategic location as a spit jutting into the Indian Ocean. The area was devastated by a tsunami in December 31, 2004 and never fully recovered.
The entry into the region was not without protest. Locals threw stones at the government and police vehicles and it was only after an intense negotiation with the locals that the security force stayed. The most visible of the protesters fired shots into the air and were arrested.
The Danish family was sailing around the world in a 43 foot pleasure yacht named SV Ing. They were kidnapped by pirates in February of 2011. There were released in September after 6 months of captivity. The MV Dover was also held by an associate group. This group also captured and ransomed the Enrico Ievoli. It was released in April for between $5 to $9 million dollars.
Home of Pirate Isse Yulux
The Royal Grace and its 22 man crew were on it's maiden voyage and was hijacked as it left Sharjah towards Nigeria. The ship is owned by the Royal Oyster Group, Pirates have hired a negotiator, most likely Looyan, and have already tried to get attention by claiming a crew member had died (without any evidence to support the claim).
The UAE is the foreign donor most often associated with funding Puntland's anti piracy program and the presence of one of their oil tankers will be certain to put the PMPF program to the test.
You can read more about Yulux's pirate gang and Hafun here
Six of the pirates captured today are in Bosaso jail. Somalia Report has learned that "Dhafoor who is a member of the Osman Mohamoud clan, sub-clan of Majerteen is being accused of being an investor in the group that attacked and killed the four Americans aboard the SV Quest
This evening in Bosaso, police arrested pirate commander Abdi-Koos who is said to have been behind a number of hijacks near the main port. Abdi-koos is from the Layl-kase clan (Darood) and is also alleged to be responsible for hijacking the MV Leila.