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Somali appear in Madrid court on piracy charges

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Somali appear in Madrid court on piracy charges

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Two Somalis suspected of taking part in hijacking a Spanish fishing boat have appeared before a judge in Madrid on piracy charges today.

The two unnamed men were allegedly caught by the Spanish navy trying to make their way ashore from an area where the Alakrana was overrun by pirates. The suspects are being questioned by Baltazar Garzon, the high-profile prosecuting judge. The Spanish government has asked Somalia authorities for help free the Alakrana, whose 36 crew includes Spaniards. It was captured despite the presence of Spanish and French naval ships in the area. A French warship had more success at the weekend after capturing five pirates who attacked it thinking it was a cargo ship. The suspects have been handed over to Somali officials.