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Because Of Somali Pirates, Ocean Racers Are In A 'Stealth Zone'

The six-boat, nine-month-long, 39,000-mile Volvo Ocean Race that started in Spain two months ago and is set to end in Ireland next July, has entered its "stealth zone" — an area off the coast of Somalia where the teams' progress will not be precisely broadcast to the world because of the threat in that part of the Indian Ocean from pirates.

"Boat tracks and data will be hidden from the public once they reach a certain point in the Indian Ocean," the race's organizers say on their "race tracker" page.

Right now, for instance, the site shows that the Groupama Sailing Team is in the lead, but gives no information about its location in that stealth zone — which covers "an area ... from the northern tip of Madagascar to the United Arab Emirates."

And the racers are heading "towards a safe haven port, where they will be loaded onto a ship for transportation through the worst affected waters and on to a point off the Sharjah coast, where they will resume racing to Abu Dhabi," the race website says.

There's more about the reasons in this video.

(H/T to NPR's Scott Neuman.)

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

'It's A Surviving Tool': 'Native' Tells Satirical Stories Of Life In Israel

NPR's Kelly McEvers talks to author Sayed Kashua, an Israeli-Palestinian whose satirical weekly columns in Haaretz newspaper are collected in his new book called Native.
NPR

What The Heck Is Natural Wine? Here's A Taste

Natural wines can be off-putting at first: perhaps darker than usual, a little fizzy or cloudy. Some find them charming, others unsophisticated. Here's a guide to this trending, quirky style of wine.
NPR

Jim Gilmore, Who Was Campaigning For President, Isn't Anymore

He had the resume — swing-state governor, veteran, ex-party leader — but there's a good chance you had no idea he was running. Judging by vote totals, Iowa and New Hampshire may have missed it too.
NPR

Colonialism Comment Puts Facebook Under Scrutiny

A Facebook board member lambasted a decision by regulators in India, the social network's second-largest market. He thereby sparked new scrutiny of Facebook's intentions in that country.

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