Somali pirates hijack Malaysian-flagged ship

The European Union's anti-piracy task force says Somali pirates have hijacked a Malaysian-flagged ship in the Indian Ocean with 23 crew members onboard.

The force said Monday that the Kenya-bound MV Albedo was seized about 900 nautical miles (1,035 statute miles or 1,665 kilometers) east of Somalia's capital of Mogadishu. The ship originated from the United Arab Emirates' port town of Jebel Ali. The anti-piracy force says the Malaysian-owned ship was seized Friday and the crew hailed from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Iran.

Somalia has not had an effective government for 19 years, allowing piracy to flourish off its coast.

The force said pirates now hold 22 vessels and 521 hostages.