Pirates holding the MV Faina conduct a resupply Friday, Oct. 3, 2008 while under observation by a U.S. Navy ship. The Belize-flagged cargo ship, owned and operated by Kaalbye Shipping, Ukraine, is carrying a cargo of Ukrainian T-72 tanks and related military equipment. The ship was seized by pirates Sept. 25 and forced to proceed to an anchorage off the Somali Coast. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Eric L. Beauregard
According to reports, NATO joined international forces to protect vessels off 's coast, sending military ships to the waters where pirates are negotiating the release of a tanker.
The pirates softened their ransom demands for the Ukrainian ship hijacked two weeks ago in a brazen high-seas attack. Pirates have seized more than two dozen ships off Somalia's coast this year but the MV Faina has drawn the most international concern because of its dangerous cargo — 33 tanks and other heavy weapons.
NATO said a NATO naval group based in the Mediterranean Sea would sail to the Horn of and stay until at least December.