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US Marines Storm Pirate-Held Ship Off Somali Coast

The U.S. Navy said Marines stormed a pirate-held ship off the coast of Somalia Thursday and reclaimed control of the vessel.

The U.S. Fifth Fleet said the Marines boarded and seized the German-owned MV Magellan Star, capturing nine alleged pirates who hijacked the ship Wednesday. No injuries were reported.

A second U.S. naval vessel assisted in the rescue, as did a Turkish frigate which first responded to the distress call from the German ship Wednesday.

Watch raw video of Marines storming the ship:

The U.S. Navy is part of a multinational force protecting shipping lanes in the Gulf of Aden and nearby waters.

Hijackings off the coast of Somalia have continued this year despite patrols by warships from the United States, the European Union, NATO and China. On Wednesday, the European Union anti-piracy force said pirates had seized a Maltese cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden.

Somali pirates have hijacked dozens of ships over the last few years, taking in tens of millions of dollars in ransom payments from ship owners.

Somalia's central government, fighting an Islamist insurgency, lacks the power and resources to combat piracy.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.