U.S. ship damaged in pirate attack

April 14, 2009 8:00:04 PM PDT
Somali pirates have attacked and damaged an American ship carrying humanitarian aid, but the ship and crew are safe under Navy escort. A U.S. Central Command spokesman says the Liberty Sun reported being attacked around 11:30 a.m. EDT Tuesday. The vessel's owner, Lake Success, N.Y.-based Liberty Maritime Corp., says the pirates fired rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons. The ship was en route from Houston to Mombasa, Kenya.

The military spokesman, Navy Capt. Jack Hanzlik, says the Liberty Sun has a crew of about 20.

He says the USS Bainbridge sailed to the scene and reported on arriving at 5:30 p.m. EDT that the pirates had left, and there were no injuries.

The Liberty Sun is continuing on its way to Mombasa.

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