Fourteen instances of piracy off Somalia in 10 days

November 19th, 2008 - 6:12 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 19 (IANS) There have been 14 instances of piracy off the Somali coast in the past 10 days. Prior to the three vessels seized Tuesday-Wednesday, the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) had reported 92 attempts at piracy off the coast of Somalia this year, 36 of which were successful.

The following are the details of the latest incidents as posted on the IMB website (barring the three incidents Tuesday-Wednesday):

Nov 18-19: A Hong Kong flagged vessel, a Kiribati fishing vessel and a Greek ship are seized in the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast.

Nov 15: Armed pirates attacked and hijacked a chemical tanker in the Gulf of Aden.

Nov 15: 450 nautical miles south east Mogadishu, armed pirates attacked and hijacked the Saudi Aramco super tanker Sirius Star.

Nov 14: Off southern Somalia, pirates heavily armed with automatic weapons and RPGs in two speedboats chased and fired at a container ship. Master increased speed, took evasive manoeuvres and crew activated fire hoses. Pirates aborted the attempted attack. Ship sustained damages due to gunshots and RPG fire. No injuries to crew.

Nov 14: Pirates armed with automatic weapons in three small speedboats approached a chemical tanker in the Gulf of Aden. Master contacted coalition warship and took evasive manoeuvres. The speedboats spread out and approached the vessel at high speed. The pirates failed in their attempt to board the vessel.

Nov 13: Six pirates in a fast speedboat approached a bulk carrier in the waters off Somalia. Master raised alarm, took evasive manoeuvres and crew activated fire hoses. The pirates ordered the ship to stop but master continued with the evasive manoeuvres. The pirates fired upon the ship with two rocket propelled grenades and automatic weapons. Master called coalition warship and asked for immediate assistance. A coalition warship responded and came to the location in 15 minutes and chased away the pirate boat. No injuries to the crew or damages to the ship.

Nov 13: Off Somalia, pirates armed with automatic weapons and RPGs chased and fired upon a container ship. Because of the firing, fire broke out in the third officers’ cabin. The vessel increased speed and made evasive manoeuvres. The pirate boat came alongside on port side. Pirates tried to embark on board but were unsuccessful. Later they aborted. Vessel continued to her destination port.

Nov 12: Armed pirates in two speedboats chased a tanker in the Gulf of Aden. Tanker took evasive manoeuvres and escaped from the pirates.

Nov 12: Armed pirates attacked and hijacked a chemical tanker in the Gulf of Aden.

Nov 11: Two speedboats with three-four armed pirates in each boat chased a bulk carrier in Gulf of Aden. Evasive manoeuvres made and Indian Navy warship contacted. An Indian Navy helicopter arrived at the location and interrupted the speedboats. Speedboats aborted the attack. Later, the warship, INS Tabar, was sighted and established contact.

Nov 10: 250 nautical miles east of Mogadishu, two speedboats approached a refrigerated cargo ship. One boat approached from the starboard quarter and the other from astern. The pirates armed with guns and RPGs started to open fire on the ship. Ship made evasive manoeuvres. The speedboats could not get closer due to the waves created by the evasive manoeuvres. Later the speedboats aborted the attempt. Ship sustained damages from gunfire. Crew safe.

Nov 10: Pirates armed with RPGs and guns boarded a chemical tanker underway and hijacked it in the Gulf of Aden.

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