U.S. could help hijacked cruising couple

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The U.S. military is considering a response after reports that pirates off the coast of Somalia hijacked a yacht belonging to a California couple on a worldwide voyage distributing Bibles.

Rear Adm. Charles Gaouette, deputy commander of the Navy's Fifth Fleet, told CNN that the United States is prepared to intervene to rescue the Orange County couple if they are aboard the boat, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Jean and Scott Adam have been sailing around the world for six years on their sailboat, the S/V Quest. They also have raced with the Del Rey Yacht Club in Marina del Rey.

Omar Jamal, first secretary at the Somali mission, said Friday that pirates in the Indian Ocean took four U.S. citizens captive when they hijacked the S/V Quest. The other two people have not been identified, the newspaper said.

The couple's website, svquest.com, shows that the couple were on a journey this winter from India to the Mediterranean by way of the Arabian and Red seas. They had hoped to reach Crete by April and then sail to Istanbul, Turkey.

Piracy has flourished off Somalia's coast for two decades. Before the recent seizures of the S/V Quest and another vessel, the Alfardous, pirates were believed to be holding 29 ships and about 660 hostages.

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