During the reporting period of 23-29 February 12 there have been three piracy related incidents: a dhow was hijacked (Alert 016/12), one merchant vessel was attacked (NSC 09/12), and one merchant vessel was approached by suspected pirates (NSC 08/12).As the monsoon period comes to an end and the sea state becomes more favourable for small boats, it is expected that Pirate Attack Group (PAG) activity will increase in the weather transition period.
The European Foreign Affairs Council has agreed to extend the mandate of the EU naval operation to countering piracy European Naval Force Somalia - Operation ATALANTA (EU NAVFOR - ATALANTA) until December 2014.The current mandate expires in December this year.The Council which met at Brussels on Monday, commended the significant contribution of EUNAVFOR Atalanta to countering piracy.
Expressing concern over the surge in piracy in the Gulf of Guinea near the western coast of Africa, India has extended support to international efforts to tackle the threat of armed robbery at sea.Participating in an UN Security Council debate on ‘Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea’ here, India’s Permanent Representative Ambassador, Mr Hardeep Singh Puri, said piracy has become a major threat to maritime navigation, trade and economic activities in the Gulf of Guinea.
The Danish Navy has said two hostages have been killed as a Danish warship confronted a pirate vessel off the coast of Somalia.The Absalon was patrolling the Gulf of Aden under Nato command, reports say.The Danish ship fired at the pirate ship to force it to stop, the Danish navy said on its website.There were 17 pirates and 18 hostages on board the pirate ship, said its statement. Two hostages were found wounded and "could not be saved".
The increased success of armed guards reflects poorly on the international governments which should be protecting shipping off the coast of Somalia, Justin Stares writes.Rather than protecting international trade, European governments have simply outsourced security to the private sector. How can we explain the sharp drop in pirate hijackings off the coast of Somalia?
The Indian Navy's action against the Somalian pirates off the Gulf of Aden has resulted in the seas on the Indian side being declared a safe area for merchant ships. "Many ships have been taking the route off the Indian coast after the Indian Navy's strong action against the Somalian pirates," said Captain Pottengal Mukundan, Director, International Maritime Bureau Piracy Reporting Centre (PRC).
The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) – the principal international trade association for shipowners representing all sectors and trades and over 80% of the world merchant fleet – has responded to the outcome of the intergovernmental conference on Somalia hosted by the United Kingdom on 23 February.
Somali pirates have intensified their attack, hijacking two UAE-based vessels during the last week. A total of about 24 crew from both vessels are currently being held hostage by the pirates.The first vessel the Panama Flagged MV Leila, owned and operated by the Dubai based New Port Cargo & Shipping. A total of 24 crew men were said to be onboard the vessel when it was captured around 50 nautical miles south-southwest off Ras Al Madrakah, Oman.
International efforts to unravel the recent hijacking of a cargo ship bound for the Somaliland port of Berbera areunderway. The cargo laden ship was hijacked last week in the Gulf of Aden enroute to Berbera from Oman its current believed to be either enroute to or in the notorious pirate town of Hoobyo.
SaveOurSeafarers welcomes the London Conference on Somalia which was attended by 55 delegations from Somalia and the international community, and willingly supports its focus on unifying the international community in its coordinated support to Somalia, in the hope that a new era of Somali politics, supported by the international community, will bring peace to Somalia.