The Africa Star was en route from Mombasa, Kenya to Djibouti when pirates attacked as it sailed close to the Somali coast. Two boats approached the ship and opened fire but were driven off following a gun battle with the Israel security guards.
It was the second attack on the Africa Star in a week. Three days earlier the ship was attacked in the same area, but the crew prevented the pirates from boarding the vessel.
Earlier last week pirates stormed a ship carrying Israeli cargo from Israel’s Ashdod port to Thailand. The Turkish-owned vessel was carrying between 20,000 and 40,000 tons of potash for Israeli chemicals producer ICL, valued at some $11 million, when it was seized.
In recent weeks, NATO and EU naval forces have prevented 17 pirate attacks off the coast of Somalia.