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Hijacked U.S. captain returns home
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13:35, April 18, 2009

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A U.S. captain who has been held hostage by Somali pirate for five days arrived on Friday at his hometown in Vermont.

Capt. Richard Phillips appeared at the airport in Burlington, surrounded by his wife and children, and waved to the crowd.

He expressed gratitude to the U.S. military for doing the "impossible" to save his life, and also praised his fellow crew members, who seized their cargo boat back from pirates immediately after they were attacked.

According to U.S. media reports, Phillips will be taken to his home in Underhill.

The fate of the 50-year-old captain was put under spotlight after his boat, the U.S.-flagged Maersk-Alabama, was attacked last week by Somali pirates about 400 kilometers away from Somali coast.

After a five-day standoff, the U.S. Navy seal operatives killed the pirates who held Phillips as hostage in a lifeboat, and finally set him free.

Despite the successful rescue, the U.S. government and military are still looking for ways to halt the piracy off the Somali coast that threatens security of cargo boats from many countries.

Source: Xinhua

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