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Thursday, August 5, 1999 Published at 05:53 GMT 06:53 UK

World: Asia-Pacific

China arrests alleged Burmese pirates

Chinese police have arrested 14 Burmese sailors for alleged involvement in the hijacking of a Taiwanese-owned freighter.

The official Xinhua news agency says the men were on board the ship when it arrived at the southern port of Fangchenggang for maintenance.

It said the M.V. Marine Master had been hijacked in March and its crew set adrift in lifeboats.

The ship had been renamed the Nuovo Tierra but was identified by the International Maritime Bureau - which earlier this year accused China of failing to do enough to help combat growing piracy in the region.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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