Babylon & Beyond

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PIRATES: San Diego ship takes lead in antipiracy (UPDATED)

March 12, 2009 | 11:21 am


The San Diego-based amphibious assault ship Boxer is the new flagship for the pirate-hunting Task Force 151 patrolling the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and the Red Sea.

The task force includes ships from the U.S., Britain, Denmark and Turkey.

"Boxer has a lot to offer in the fight against piracy," said Rear Adm. Terence McKnight, the task force commander.

Among the units aboard the Boxer are infantry Marines from Camp Pendleton and a helicopter squadron from Miramar Marine Corps Air Station.

UPDATED: Two sailors were hurt in a flight deck fire while the ship was in the Gulf of Aden, the Navy announced Saturday. The fire erupted while a Super Cobra helicopter was being refueled. The two sailors were treated in the ship's medical department and are listed in stable condition.

-- Tony Perry, San Diego

Photo: Somali pirates under arrest. Credit: Associated Press