Somali Pirates Hold Hostage American Ship Captain

A U.S. boat captain is being held hostage by Somali pirates in the waters off the coast of Africa. The pirates attacked the Maersk Alabama, an American ship, over 12 hours ago. There were early reports that the Americans on board had taken back the ship, but the pirates still have the boat’s captain hostage in a separate lifeboat. A U.S. warship has reached the scene and many more are expected to follow. To date, no hostages have been harmed by Somali pirates and all previous ransoms have been paid, CNN. For more information, look at the ICC Commercial Crime Service’s site, which includes a live piracy map, ICC-CSS.

The death toll from Italy’s earthquake early Monday morning has risen to 272. There was some good news for workers relentlessly digging through the rubble – a woman was found alive today after surviving for 2 days in the wreckage, NPR.

The U.S., Russia, Great Britain, China, France, and Germany have agreed to invite Iran for a talk about their nuclear program. The six countries are hoping to find a diplomatic solution to the growing problem of Iran’s nuclear program, which Iran claims is being developed for “civilian purposes.” The inclusion of the U.S. in the talks signals a new approach from the country, as opposed to Bush’s response in the past, BBC News.

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