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Dai Hong Dan incident

Dai Hong Dan incident
Part of the Operation Enduring Freedom – Horn of Africa and War on Terror
Dai Hong Dan
Dai Hong Dan underway
Date29 October 2007
 North Korea
 United States
Somali pirates
1 destroyer
1 seized cargo vessel
22 sailors
7 pirates
Casualties and losses
6 North Korean sailors wounded
(3 seriously)
1–2 killed
3 wounded
5–6 captured
(3 of whom were wounded)

The Dai Hong Dan incident took place on 29 October 2007, when North Korean cargo vessel MV Dai Hong Dan was attacked and temporarily seized by Somali pirates off Somalia.[1] The following day, the crew of the vessel overpowered the pirates with the support of a US naval vessel.[2][3][4]


The incident took place about 70 miles (110 km) northeast of the Somali capital, Mogadishu. A group of Somali pirates boarded and captured the North Korean cargo ship Dai Hong Dan. According to North Korean sources, the ship had unloaded its cargo in the Somali capital when seven armed pirates (disguised as guards) boarded the ship, detaining the 22 sailors of the crew in the steering room and an engine room. They then forced the ship to sea and demanded a ransom of US$15,000.[1]


The following day, responding to the vessel's distress signal, the American destroyer USS James E. Williams approached the ship and deployed a SH-60B helicopter and a VBSS (Visit, Board, Search, and Seizure) team to secure the scene.[4] Meanwhile, the North Korean sailors attacked their captors, seizing some weapons. A prolonged gunfight between the sailors and the pirates resulted in the pirates' defeat.

One or two pirates were killed in the engagement, and the others were captured (three were wounded). Of the six Korean sailors wounded, three required medical treatment, which was provided by American medical personnel.


The North Korean press (KCNA) released an unprecedented positive statement, expressing gratitude to the United States for their help,[5][6] and stressing the successful US-North Korean collaboration during the incident.[7][8]


  1. ^ a b "Pirates 'overpowered' off Somalia". BBC News. 31 October 2007.
  2. ^ "N. Korea Thanks U.S. for Piracy Aid". Associated Press (AP). 2007-11-09. Retrieved 15 July 2017.
  3. ^ "IIP Publications". Bureau of International Information Programs. US Government. Retrieved 15 July 2017.[not specific enough to verify]
  4. ^ a b "Crew wins deadly pirate battle off Somalia". CNN. 2007-10-30. Retrieved 15 July 2017.
  5. ^ "North Korea offers rare thanks to U.S. for help". Reuters. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  6. ^ "N. Korea thanks U.S. for helping its sailors in fight with Somali pirates". Denver Post. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  7. ^ DPRK's Consistent Principled Stand to Fight against All Forms of Terrorism Reiterated, 11 November 2007.[dead link] (dead; archive link)
  8. ^ "N. Korea Thanks US Over Piracy Standoff" – via