Earlier in July, Somali pirates had released another vessel, known as the Merchant Vessel Suez, after keeping its crew  hostage for more than 10 months. —File Photo

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani vessel that had been taken over by a group of Somali pirates earlier this week was rescued by the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) near the coast of Somalia on Sunday.

A statement issued by the CMF said: “It became evident that the Pakistani crew were being held against their will by the Somalis, whose weapons were then seized and destroyed.”

When contacted, a Pakistan Navy official confirmed the CMF’s claim.

The ship’s crew were later set free by the Royal Navy, and the Pakistani crewmembers thanked the British personnel for ending their captivity.

The CMF is a multi-national naval partnership which aims to combat terrorism and crimes at sea. It is commanded by a US Navy vice-admiral and a deputy commander, who is a British Royal Navy Commodore.

Earlier in July, Somali pirates had released the Merchant Vessel Suez after keeping its crew hostage for more than 10 months.

The pirates had demanded a $2.1 million ransom.

Despite repeated attempts, Pakistan Navy’s director general public relations Commodore Irfanul Haq could not be contacted for comments on the report.