Indian Navy foils pirate attack on Chinese vessel

May 6th, 2011 - 3:41 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 6 (IANS) India said Friday its warships and military aircraft had foiled a pirate attack on a Chinese cargo vessel with 24 crew members on board in the Arabian Sea off Karwar in Karnataka and forced the brigands to flee.

The Chinese-owned bulk carrier, MV Full City, was boarded by the pirates about 450 nautical miles west of Karwar on Thursday, even as the 24 Chinese sailors locked themselves in the vessel’s safe house to prevent their capture by the brigands, an Indian Navy officer said here.

The crew’s emergency message was received by Indian Navy and Coast Guard warships that were patrolling in the vicinity and they rushed to the site of the pirate attack. A naval aircraft that flew to the scene did several low passes over the ship, warning the pirates to abandon their attempt to hijack the Panama-flagged vessel.

The air crew also messaged the pirates that Indian warships were closing in on MV Full City, forcing them to abandon the vessel.

The aircraft’s crew also noticed that the pirates had boarded a skiff and rushed to a mother ship in the vicinity, following which they sailed towards Somalia at full speed, the officer said.

“MV Full City was saved from getting hijacked by the very prompt action of the Indian naval aircraft,” the officer added.

The Indian Navy has, since January, sunk four pirate mother ships in the Arabian Sea, apart from capturing 120 brigands and jailing them in India.

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