The commander of an Italian cruise ship said his crew successfully fended off an attack by pirates off Somalia, returning fire when the pirates attacked.
Cmdr. Ciro Pinto told Italian state radio that he ordered his security forces to return fire when six men in a small white boat opened fire on the Msc Melody on Saturday night. The ship is owned by the Italian company Msc Crociere.
Company head Domenico Pellegrino told the ANSA news agency that all 1,500 passengers and crew on board were safe.
The attack occurred about 180 miles north of the Seychelles. The ship was on a 22-day cruise from Durban, South Africa, to Genoa, Italy. ANSA says the ship is now heading as scheduled to the Jordanian port of Aqaba.