PARIS — Somali pirates in two skiffs fired on a French navy vessel early Wednesday after apparently mistaking it for a commercial boat, the French military said. The French ship gave chase and captured five suspected pirates.
No one was wounded by the volleys from the Kalashnikov rifles directed at La Somme, a 3,800-ton refueling ship, French military spokesman Rear Adm. Christophe Prazuck said.
La Somme "was probably taken for a commercial ship by the two small skiffs" about 250 nautical miles off Somalia's coast, Prazuck said.
"They understood their mistake too late," he said.
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One skiff fled, and La Somme pursued the second one in an hourlong chase.
Palestinian leader outrages West Bank
RAMALLAH, West Bank — In five turbulent years in office, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has never faced as much outrage as over his decision to suspend efforts to get Israeli officials put on trial for war crimes in Gaza.
On Wednesday, Gaza professors threw shoes at his defaced image and West Bank commentators called for his resignation, the latest signs Abbas may have miscalculated in bowing to what Palestinian officials say was intense U.S. pressure.
Abbas is unlikely to be forced out of office because he enjoys strong Western support and has ruled the West Bank without challenge since his Islamic militant Hamas rivals drove him out of Gaza in 2007.