Snipers kill three pirates to save American seaman
Navy snipers killed three Somali pirates on Sunday, freeing an American sea captain being held hostage by the men.
After five days of failed negotiations to free 53-year-old Capt. Richard Phillips, snipes fired just three separate shots to end the hostage situation, according to the Associated Press.
A fourth hostage had previously surrendered in order to receive medical treatment for a cut hand, according to the New York Times.
President Barack Obama authorized the strike, demanding that action only be taken if Phillips life was in imminent danger. That action was taken when snipers spotted one pirate holding a gun to the captain’s head.
While Sunday’s situation was successfully averted, both the New York Times and the Associated Press published that the events are unlikely to prevent further hostage taking – in fact it might put more American lives at risk in the area.
"This could escalate violence in this part of the world, no question about it," Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, the commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, said to the Associated Press.