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Pirate attacks down, but hijackings up, U.N. reports

From Joe Vaccarello, CNN
  • Using military intervention has helped fight piracy, but the problem persists, the U.N. says
  • The level of violence by pirates has increased

United Nations (CNN) -- While the number of pirate attacks off the coast of Somalia has dropped since last year, there has been an increase in the number of ships that have been successfully hijacked, the United Nations says.

The U.N. Security Council report shows that in the first nine months of 2010, "there were 164 attacks against ships in the waters off the coast of Somalia, resulting in the hijacking of 37 ships ...This compares with 193 reported attacks and 33 ships hijacked during the same period in 2009."

Reinforcing the mixed message of the report, it highlighted that while "the strategy of using military intervention has proved helpful," the problem persists and the level of violence by the pirates has increased.

The report states that as of October 11, 389 people and 18 vessels were being held hostage.