Sunday, May 30, 2010

Letter of Marque Against Piracy

As Reported http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-isenberg/there-is-more-than-one-wa_b_594777.html


On May 27 I wrote about the pros and cons of using private security contractors to fight piracy. But that article considered just the use of putting armed guards aboard ship. That is not the only way, or even the best way, private security firms can be involved in fighting pirates.
Using private contractors help provide security against pirates is an increasingly popular notion. Congressman Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) called on Congress to "issue letters of marque and reprisal, deputizing private organizations to act within the law to disable and capture those engaged in piracy." Indeed, this idea is grounded in the U.S. Constitution, which expressly invests Congress with authority to define piracy on the high seas and to issue letters of marque. (Art. I, § 8, cls. 10, 11).
For detail let's consider the article "Reconsidering the Letter of Marque: Utilizing Private Security Providers Against Piracy" by Maj. Theodore Richard, which was published in the Spring issue of the Public Contract Law Journal. Richard is an Air Force Judge Advocate and is currently serving as trial attorney in the Air Force Commercial Litigation Division in Washington,
As Richard notes, piracy thrives in coastal regions where people are drawn towards criminality by desperate circumstances combined with an absence of law-enforcement authorities. The pirate scourge originated in the failure of the rule of law and international institutions to prevent exploitation of Somali waters. The now sophisticated and aggressive pirate operations are thought to have morphed out of a self-help police or military function into piracy earlier this decade. Somali fisherman started out trying to deter illegal dumping and fishing and graduated from attacking vessels to seizing them for ransom, with the Hawiye clan, based around Haradere in central Somalia, emerging as the dominant group of pirates in 2004.
When the short-lived Union of Islamic Courts government took over the Haradere area in 2006, they suppressed local piracy, so the Darod clan, with strongholds around the east coast of Somalia and in the semi-autonomous Puntland region on the Gulf of Aden, took over the piracy role.
By 2008 a United Nations report described the pirates as "loosely organized and poorly trained," with a fluid membership. The report described two significant overlapping networks: one in Puntland, mainly consisting of the Majerteen clan, and another in central Somalia, mainly consisting of the Habar Gidir clan.
Puntland's current president, Abdirahman Mohamed Farole, has made fighting piracy a priority. During a meeting with an international delegation in February 2009, President Farole explained that military operations against the pirates would not be sufficient to end the piracy problem. Instead he "strongly suggested that the world must first address the root causes of piracy, including illegal overfishing and toxic waste dumping."
It is not excuse for piracy to point out that it is not well realized that illegal fishing by foreign vessels is a significant concern for Somali leaders: a United Nations Secretary General report lamented the "pillage of Somali Indian Ocean and Red Sea waters by literally hundreds of vessels from a variety of nationalities" and expressed concerns of overfishing and depletion of fish stocks.
In 2005 some of the intruding vessels attacked local Somali fishermen and destroyed their boats and equipment. It should be no surprise that another United Nations report described the Somali fishery situation as resembling "naval warfare": "Fishing boats are typically mounted with heavy anti-aircraft canons and many of the crews are armed."
This analogy has become even more appropriate in recent years, with reports of international naval vessels firing on local fisherman and protecting their own vessels illegally fishing in Somali waters.
Richard points out that Puntland has employed a number of different security contractors since 2000, meeting with various levels of success.
It first contracted the British company Hart Security ("Hart") from 2000 to 2001. Hart was hired "mainly to protect Puntland's maritime resources against illegal foreign fishing by providing training as well as on-ship support to the local Coast Guard." The company's force consisted of one boat and seventy men, primarily Somalis with a balanced composition from the local clans. Hart was financed through the sale of fishing licenses. "Hart was very successful: the frequency of piracy declined, and the nucleus of a relatively efficient coast guard was formed with its spine consisting of British advisors and British-trained Somali militia acting as boarding parties.
Hart successfully tapped British legal resources to settle international disputes.
For example, when the Somali coast guard detained a Spanish ship for illegal fishing, Hart contacted a British law firm and resolved the matter through arbitration.
Hart did not simply ransom the vessel, but made use of a legal international dispute resolution forum, strengthening Puntland's legal authority.
Hart stood apart from its successors by respecting the rule of law; it actively sought legal advice and followed fisheries guidelines.
Internal conflicts within Puntland ultimately doomed the Hart Group. Other companies -- such as SOMCAN, Al Hababi Marine Services, TopCat Marine Security, Northbridge Services Group, Secopex, Odyssey Consulting SA -- that followed Hart did less well, for a variety of reasons; some their own fault, and others beyond their control.
The point here is that maritime security contractors can be hired for a variety of purposes. Putting armed guards aboard ships is just one of them. As that is a defensive measure it is inherently a reactive, rather than a proactive one. In medical terms it is a cure and not a preventive measure. Using contractors to help provide a comprehensive coast guard force is likely a better way to go.
If governments, rather than commercial shipping companies, hired private security contractors for that purpose we might see real progress in fighting pirates. But that, as Richard notes "must be centrally organized and controlled."
In that regard letters of marque might be a useful tool. Richard concludes that:
Littoral governments should reconsider letters of marque to license and control privatized maritime security. The letters can be used to license defensive weapons on merchant vessels, and could even be used to authorize active anti-piracy operations. Furthermore Somali governments can use the letters to deputize their security contractors. Maritime security contractors can be part of the solution to piracy--especially if they are properly licensed and regulated through letters of marque.

What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Piracy Attack In Mozambique Channel

As Reported HERE

2010/05/26
A SPANISH fishing trawler repelled an attack by pirates off Madagascar yesterday , as South Africa warned that piracy could spread down the continent.

The Echebasta company said: “The boat took evasive manoeuvres and was able to leave the area without suffering any harm to personnel.”
It is the first such attempt recorded in the Mozambique Channel, far further south than most of the attacks, which occur off the coast of Somalia.
The Spanish seiner (tuna boat) was attacked just after pulling back its nets and spotted the pirate skiff when it was only one nautical mile away.
Since foreign navies deployed an armada of warships to curb attacks in the busy Gulf of Aden, Somalia’s ransom-hunting pirates have ventured further away from their coast to capture prey.
The French and Spanish tuna- fishing fleets based in the Indian Ocean had been attacked mainly around the Seychelles archipelago but pirates had rarely ventured as far south as Madagascar.
Last year, another Spanish tuna fishing vessel, the Alakrana, and its crew of 36 were taken hostage for more than a month off the coast of Somalia, where pirates have bases. They were freed after paying a ransom of 4million (about R31.9m) , according to the Somali pirates who captured them.
Yesterday, Justice Minister Jeff Radebe warned an African Renaissance conference in Durban: “If we allow such an illegal activity to fester in one part of Africa, we are sending an open invitation for it to spread to other parts of Africa.”
The conference was attended by delegates from many African countries.
Radebe said South Africa did not rejoice in the fact that the long route around Cape Town was being considered a viable alternative to the Somali coast, which was infested by pirates.

South Africa believed that the whole continent should find a solution to the problem.
Although most pirate activity took place in international waters, a response strategy in terms of jurisprudence was needed, Radebe said.
The Baltic and International Maritime Council recently urged Somalia and other African countries to co-operate in fighting piracy off their shores. — Sapa

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Finally, Credibility to the Maritime Security Industry

As you can find HERE

IAMSP, International Association of Maritime Security Professionals. We finally have a legitimate organization to add credibility to the Maritime Security Industry. With a strong Constitution and Code of Practice, there can be a standardization of performance and conduct.

May 19, ONI Report, Threat to Shipping

As Reported Here By ONI


This week's reporting:
.
  A.  Cargo ship robbed on 16 May 10 at the port of Douala, Cameroon.
.
  B.  Crew from the tug (ATLANTIC 3) set adrift by pirates found off the Vietnamese coast. 
.
  C.  Sailing catamaran robbed on 5 May 10 off Blup Blup Island, Papua New Guinea.
.
Africa
.
4.  DETAILS:  There is reported active violence against shipping, a credible threat to shipping, 
or the potential to develop into a direct threat to the safety of shipping in the following areas:
.
  A.  NORTH AMERICA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  B.  CENTRAL AMERICA-CARIBBEAN:  
.
      1.  ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES:  Catamaran boarded 2 May 10 between the 
hours of 1845 – 2030, while berthed at Port Elizabeth.  Vessel had been left fully secured with all 
hatches locked, with some hatches set in the ventilation position.  While crew was away, an 
unknown number of persons boarded the vessel and attempted to force open the hatches.  The 
hatch over the master’s cabin was successfully forced open, possibly with the use of a steel bar 
or something similar, allowing full access to the rest of the cabin.  No further information 
provided (Noonsite.com).
.
  C.  SOUTH AMERICA:  
.
      1.  COLOMBIA:  General cargo ship robbed 3 May 10 at 2300 local time berthed in position 
10:57.5N – 074:45.5W, Palermo terminal, Barranquilla.  A vessel at berth had completed cargo 
operations and was preparing to depart.  The captain from the ship berthed ahead of them 
informed the gangway watch keeper that robbers had just stolen ship property from his ship and 
were making their way towards their ship.  The duty officer raised the alarm and due to the 
timely information provided by the ship’s captain, prevented any further incidents from 
occurring (IMB).
.
      2.  PERU:  Bulk carrier robbed 12 May 10 between 1830-1930 local time while anchored in 
position 12:01.7S – 077:12.1W, Callao anchorage.  Armed robbers boarded the vessel and took 
one shore guard hostage, and threatened him by pointing a gun to his head.  Another guard 
informed the bridge, who then raised the alarm and mustered the crew.  Local authorities were 
then informed.  The robbers broke open the bosun store door and escaped with ship’s stores 
before the patrol boat arrived on location (IMB).
.
  D.  ATLANTIC OCEAN AREA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  E.  NORTHERN EUROPE-BALTIC:  No current incidents to report.
.
  F.  MEDITERRANEAN-BLACK SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  G.  WEST AFRICA:
.
       1.  CAMEROON:  Cargo ship (NORTH SPIRIT) robbed on 16 May 10 shortly after it 
arrived at the port of Douala, Cameroon.  Twenty armed men boarded the Russian and Ukrainian 
crewed ship and disabled all radio and navigation equipment, took valuables, money and 
personal effects from the crewmembers' cabins.  They took the Russian master and senior 
mechanic hostage when they departed the vessel.  As of 17 May, the men's whereabouts was still 
unknown (MSC-HOA). 

      2.  NIGERIA:  Bulk carrier robbed 4 May 10 at 0200 local time while anchored in position 
06:17.9N – 003:21.5E, Lagos outer anchorage.  Seven robbers armed with rifles and knives 
boarded the vessel during anchoring operations.  They assaulted the captain and 3rd officer, and 
damaged ship’s equipment before robbing the crew of personal belongings and escaping (IMB).
.
      3.  NIGERIA:  Tanker fired upon 27 Apr 10 at 2145 local time while in position 06:10.1N – 
003:20.92E, Lagos.  An officer on the vessel noticed on radar a boat approaching from the port 
bow.  When lights were directed at the boat, the boat stopped and turned towards another vessel.  
Later, the boat approached the tanker from astern.  The men in the boat opened fire at the vessel 
and attempted to board but failed due to razor wire around the deck and the vessel’s constant 
maneuvering.  All vessels in the vicinity were informed via VHF.  No injuries to the crew were 
reported (IMB).
.
      4.  DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO:  Tanker robbed 24 Apr 10 while anchored at 
Boma.  Robbers boarded the vessel and stole ship’s properties before escaping unnoticed.  No 
further details to provide (IMB).
.
  H.  INDIAN OCEAN-EAST AFRICA:
.
      1.  RED SEA:  Tanker reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0523 UTC while underway 
in position 13:48N – 043:00E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  Two skiffs 
were sighted at a distance of 1NM from the vessel.  One skiff approached the vessel at a high 
speed, with four armed men and a hook ladder visible.  Armed security personnel onboard fired 
several warning shots at the skiff forcing the armed men to abandon the pursuit (IMB).
.
      2.  RED SEA:  Bulk carrier reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0515 UTC while 
underway in position 13:46.2N – 042:57.7E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  
Vessel reported being chased by two high speed wooden boats with approximately six persons in 
each.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers.  After approximately 80 
minutes, the boats moved away (Operator, IMB).
.
      3.  GULF OF ADEN:  General cargo ship reported suspicious approach 12 May 10 at 1628 
local time while underway in position 12:27.7N – 043:43.4E, approximately 20NM east of the 
Bab el Mandeb.  Five boats each containing two to three persons armed with RPGs and 
automatic weapons approached the vessel from the port side and remained in close pursuit for 
approximately 10 minutes before eventually moving away (Operator, IMB).
.
      4.  GULF OF ADEN:  Chemical tanker (PANEGA) hijacked 11 May 10 at 1536 UTC while 
underway in position 12:31N – 047:08E, approximately 120NM southeast of Aden, Yemen.  
Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel along with its 15 crewmembers (AFP, IMB).
.
      5.  GULF OF ADEN:  SS (THE OCEANIC), a former passenger ship used by the Peace 
Boat, a Japan-based international non-governmental and non-profit organization to promote 
peace, fired upon 5 May 10 at 2122 UTC while underway in position 13:06N – 048:37E, 
approximately 90NM southwest of Al Mukalla, Yemen.  One skiff opened fire on the vessel with 
automatic weapons and RPGs.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers 
and was able to successfully avoid the attack.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB, 
Mercury chat, American Shipper Online).
.
      6.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (MSC PEGGY) fired upon 12 May 10 at 1520 UTC 
while underway in position 09:59.12S – 042:16.27E, approximately 300NM southeast of Dar es 
Salaam, Tanzania.  Suspected pirates opened fire on the vessel with two RPG rounds.  The vessel 
conducted evasive maneuvers and increased to maximum speed of 17 knots (IMB, Mercury chat, 
Tradewinds).
.
      7.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (ELENI P) hijacked 12 May 10 at 0556 local time while 
underway in position 15:55N – 060:50E, approximately 420NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel with its 23 crewmembers and are sailing it towards the 
Somali coast (IMB, Reuters).
.
      8.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier fired upon 10 May 10 at 0538 UTC while underway in 
position 00:06N – 064:57E, approximately 640NM northeast of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  
Armed men in a skiff chased and fired upon the vessel underway.  The crew enforced effective 
counter piracy measures and evaded the attack, forcing the skiff to eventually move away.  The 
vessel sustained some damages from the gunfire (IMB).
.
      9.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Chemical tanker (MARIDA MARGUERITE) hijacked 8 May 10 at 
1206 UTC while underway in position 14:58N – 054:47E, approximately 140NM northeast of 
Socotra Island.  Armed pirates chased, attacked, and hijacked the vessel along with its 22 
crewmembers (IMB, AFP).
.
      10.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessel (TAI YUAN 227) hijacked 6 May 10 at 1107 UTC 
while underway in position 01:50N – 067:50E, approximately 1150NM southeast of Eyl, 
Somalia.  Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel along with its 28 crewmembers.  The vessel’s 
owner lost contact with the vessel as it transited toward the Maldives and upon resuming 
communications with it, he was told by hijackers to pay a ransom for the crew (AP, IMB, 
Mercury chat).
.
      11.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (OCEAN TRADER) fired upon 5 May 10 at 0520 UTC 
while underway in position 09:43S – 041:15E, approximately 210NM southeast of Dar es 
Salaam, Tanzania.  Armed men in a skiff chased the vessel underway and opened fire on it.  An 
embarked security team returned fire forcing the skiff to abort the attack and move away.  No 
crewmembers were injured (IMB, AFP, Mercury chat).
.
      12.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (MOSCOW UNIVERSITY) reportedly hijacked 5 May 10 at 
0413 UTC while underway in position 12:15N – 059:30E, approximately 290NM east of Socotra 
Island.  Pirates in a skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The captain conducted evasive 
maneuvers and contacted a nearby warship for assistance.  The owners informed they had lost 
contact with the vessel and that it was no longer moving.  The crew reportedly locked themselves 
in the rudder room and pirates were onboard.  No further information to provide at this time 
(IMB, AP, Mercury chat).
.
      13.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0348 UTC while underway in 
position 17:59N – 065:49E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  Six men armed 
with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The 
vessel contacted coalition forces, increased speed, and conducted evasive maneuvers.  The men 
attempted to board the vessel several times before finally aborting the attack.  No injuries to the 
crew were reported (IMB).
.
      14.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (ISUZUGAWA) fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0215 UTC while 
underway in position 18:06N – 065:47E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Four men armed with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on 
the vessel.  The vessel raised the alarm, sent out a distress call, increased speed and conducted 
evasive maneuvers, while the crew locked all accommodation doors.  The armed men tried to 
board the vessel using a steel ladder and hooks attached to ropes.  They fired an RPG at the 
accommodation and the ship continued with evasive maneuvering.  After several attempts, the 
men aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB, MSCHOA).
.
      15.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (PYXIS DELTA) fired upon 23 Apr 10 at 0242 UTC while 
underway in position 14:51N – 065:14E, approximately 640NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Five armed men in a skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel with RPGs and automatic 
weapons.  The master conducted evasive maneuvers and contacted coalition forces for 
assistance.  The vessel raised their alarm and increased speed.  The armed men chased the vessel 
for more than an hour and aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew or damage to the vessel 
was reported (IMB, Tradewinds).
.
      16.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier fired upon 21 Apr 10 at 1050 UTC while underway in 
position 01:10.05N – 065:00.08E, approximately 665NM northeast of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  
Four men in a blue skiff armed with RPGs and automatic weapons opened fire on the vessel for 
approximately three minutes.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers, 
forcing the attackers to abandon the attempt (IMB, Operator).
.
      17.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (VOC DAISY) hijacked 21 Apr 10 at 0605 UTC while 
underway in position 16:25N – 057:13E, approximately 280NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Suspected pirates in skiffs boarded and hijacked the vessel, taking 21 crewmembers hostage (AP, 
IMB).
.
      18.  BANGLADESH:  General cargo ship robbed 1 May 10 at 0440 local time while moored 
in position 22:16N – 091:49E, Chittagong anchorage.  Three robbers armed with longknives 
boarded the vessel while it was conducting cargo operations at a mooring buoy.  The duty watch 
noticed the robbers, who then tried to catch him.  The watch ran to the gangway and informed 
another crewmember who then raised the alarm.  The robbers stole ship’s stores and escaped 
upon seeing the crew alertness.  The coast guard was informed (IMB).
.
  I.  RED SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  J.  PERSIAN GULF:  No current incidents to report.
.
  K.  SOUTHEAST ASIA:
.
      1.  MALAYSIA:  Bulk carrier (PERFORMER) boarded 10 May 10 at 0355 local time while 
anchored in position 01:17.84N – 104:09E, approximately 3NM south of Tanjung Ayam.  Six to 
seven robbers armed with knives boarded the vessel and gained access to the engine room before 
being discovered by a crewmember who alerted the bridge.  The master dispatched other 
crewmembers to investigate.  The crew made a thorough search of the vessel but was unable to 
located any of the robbers.  No crewmembers were injured and nothing was reported stolen 
(ReCAAP).
.
      2.  MALAYSIA:  Chemical tanker reported attempted boarding 22 Apr 10 at 0300 local time 
while anchored in position 01:19.8N – 104:16.1E, Eastern OPL anchorage.  Three robbers in a 
boat attempted to board the vessel. The duty watchman on deck spotted the robbers and raised 
the alarm, forcing them to abort the attempt.  No casualties were reported (IMB).
.
      3.  INDONESIA:  Chemical tanker (SINAR BUSAN) robbed 2 May 10 at 0130 local time 
while anchored in the port of Anyer.  Six robbers armed with knives boarded the vessel via the 
stern from a small boat using ropes and grapnel hooks.  The robbers threatened the watch 
keepers and forced them to open the door to the engine room.  The robbers stole some engine 
spares and escaped via the small boat.  No crewmembers were injured (ReCAAP).
.
      4.  INDONESIA:  Tug (ATLANTIC 3) reportedly hijacked 27 Apr 10 at 1726 local time 
while underway in position 01:12.38N – 104:45.92E, approximately 9NM east of Pulau Bintan.  
At 1726 local time, the shipping company lost contact with the vessel as it was transiting from 
Tanjung Ayam, Malaysia to Kintap, Indonesia.  The last known position was 01:12.38N – 
104:45.92E.  The company reported the incident to Singapore’s POCC (ReCAAP).  UPDATE:
On 3 May 10, Vietnamese authorities responded to a distress signal off the Vietnamese coast and 
found the M/V ATLANTIC 3’s nine crewmembers adrift in a life raft.  On 19 May 10, 
Philippine Coast Guard officials found the tug ATLANTIC 3 and the barge ATLANTIC 5, in 
Sarangani Bay, Philippines.  At the time, criminals were cutting away the welded names on the 
tug boat and barge using gas torches.  The tugboat had been renamed MARYLN 8.  Philippine 
authorities continue to investigate (ReCAAP).
.
      5.  INDONESIA:  General cargo ship robbed 20 Apr 10 at 0345 local time while anchored at 
Tanjung Priok.  Four robbers armed with long knives boarded the vessel.  The duty watch 
noticed one robber coming out from the port side entrance and immediately informed the officer 
on watch who raised the alarm.  The robbers escaped with stolen ship’s equipment (IMB).
.
       6.  PAPUA NEW GUINEA:  Sailing catamaran robbed on 5 May 10 at midnight local time 
while anchored off Blup Blup Island approximately 50 miles southwest of Wewak.  Six men 
armed with long knives and machetes boarded the 12 meter catamaran attacked the crew and 
stole numerous items including food, outboard motor, generator, cameras, mattresses, and 
pillows.  Several crewmembers were injured during the incident (Noonsite.com).
.
      7.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Container ship robbed 8 May 10 at 1720 UTC while underway in 
position 03:16N – 105:25E, approximately 20NM northwest of Pulau Mangkai.  Eight men 
armed with long knives boarded the vessel and gained control of the bridge.  They stole ship’s 
and crew’s property before escaping.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB).
.
      8.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Bulk carrier reported attempted boarding 8 May 10 at 1645 UTC 
while underway in position 03:22.3N – 105:27.2E, approximately 20NM northwest of Pulau 
Mangkai.  Six armed men in an unlit small wooden boat approached and attempted to board the 
vessel.  The alert crew noticed the boat and raised the alarm.  The ship’s whistle was sounded, 
deck lights switched on, and the crew mustered.  The armed men aborted the attempted boarding 
upon seeing the crew’s alertness.  A security message was transmitted via VHF warning other 
ships in the vicinity (IMB).
.
      9.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug fired upon 1 May 10 at 2230 local time while underway in 
position 03:38N - - 103:45E, approximately 28NM southeast of Kuantan, Malaysia.  Robbers in 
a boat attacked the tug towing a barge and attempted to board.  The crew fired rocket parachute 
flares at the boat and sent a distress call via VHF Ch. 16.  A Malaysian warship in the vicinity 
responded and dispatched a helicopter to render assistance.  The boat managed to escape before 
the helicopter arrived.  Malaysian authorities are investigating (IMB).
.
      10.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug (PU 2402) robbed 27 Apr 10 at 2138 local time while 
underway in position 04:44.16N – 103:58E, approximately 70NM northeast of Kuantan, 
Malaysia.  Seven robbers in a small boat came along the port side of the vessel.  Six of the 
robbers boarded the vessel while one of them armed with a parang waited in the boat.  The ship 
master managed to activate the vessel’s SSAS, but was disabled by one of the robbers.  All nine 
crew was led to the master’s cabin with their hands tied.  The robbers threatened the crew with 
machetes, demanding they hand over their cash and valuables.  The incident lasted 
approximately 30 minutes.  The robbers left the tug taking with them cash, a laptop, and the 
crew’s mobile phones.  The incident was reported to Singapore’s Port Operation and Control 
Centre (ReCAAP).
.
      11.  VIETNAM:  Container ship robbed 28 Apr 10 at 1848 UTC while anchored at Vung 
Tau.  Two robbers boarded the vessel at anchor.  The duty watchman spotted the robbers and 
immediately raised the alarm.  The robbers managed to escape with ship’s stores.  Port authority 
was informed (IMB).
.
      12.  VIETNAM:  Tanker robbed 21 Apr 10 at 0308 local time while anchored in position 
10:13.7N – 107:05E, Vung Tau.  Armed men boarded the tanker.  The duty watchman from the 
bridge spotted the robbers and raised the ship’s alarm.  The robbers escaped with ship’s stores.  
Port authority was informed (IMB).
.
  L.  NORTH ASIA: No current incidents to report.
.
  M.  PACIFIC-ANTARCTIC OCEAN:  No current incidents to report.
.
  N.  ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC NON-STATE ACTIVIST GROUPS:  No current 
incidents to report.
.
5.  Originator of this WWTTS report requests consumer feedback. Originator will incorporate all 
anti-shipping events and violence against the maritime industry into this weekly message where
appropriate.  The Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) can be contacted via message traffic at ONI 
WASHINGTON DC//11// or, the ONI violence at sea (VAS) desk may be contacted at comm. 
Phone (301) 669-4784 or via e-mail at amoulder@nmic.navy.mil.//

Friday, May 21, 2010

Pirate Attack Near Maldives

Pirated Tug and Barge Found in Philippines

As Reported HERE 


The Philippines coast guard has apprehended a Malaysian barge and tugboat in the process of having their registration details altered off Mindanao island.

The coast guard service has filed a report to the Singapore-based office of Regional Cooperation Against Piracy and Armed Robbery.

The two vessels, found at sea near the southern Mindanao island, were reportedly hijacked in Indonesian waters some weeks ago.

Shirley Escalante reports from Manila that coast guard commandant Admiral Wilfredo Tamayo believes the hijacked vessels are part of a regional trade in piracy of ships and smuggling.

He says an inspection team found the two vessels' descriptions in the process of being altered.

Information on the vessels' documents and in machinery, as well as their registration numbers and the names "Atlantic 3" on the tugboat and "Atlantic 5" on the barge were being defaced.

The coast guard is trying to establish the identity of suspects arrested on board.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Somalia Criticizes Pirate Trial In US

As Reported By BBC NEWS

So, Where do you try a pirate that attacked a US Flagged ship over 450nm from shore?

A Somali official has criticised the US for prosecuting a man over a piracy incident off the Horn of Africa.
Jamaal Cumar, a US-based Somali official, told the BBC there were "serious concerns" over jurisdiction in the case of Abdiwali Abdiqadir Muse.
Mr Cumar questioned the authority of any foreign country to try Somali pirates active off East Africa.
Muse, from Somalia, faces 27 years in a US jail after admitting an attack on the Maersk Alabama in April 2009.
He was captured by the US Navy, whose sharpshooters killed three other pirates trying to escape on a lifeboat, saving the captain.
He is due to be sentenced in October.
'Extrajudicial practice' Mr Cumar told the BBC's Network Africa he had been trying to work out why the US would have any authority to try Muse's case and those of several other suspects in custody in the US.
"The Somali government's position has always been that we questioned the jurisdiction of this case," he said.
Crew members celebrating on the Maersk Alabama after the captain's
 release The Maersk Alabama was carrying aid bound for Somalia when attacked "We felt that it was an exercise in extrajudicial practice of the law and we asked the US to return those pirates back to Somalia."
Mr Cumar says he wants a UN-backed international tribunal to deal with piracy cases.
Somali pirate suspects have been tried in various countries across the world, as Somalia has no functioning central government.
Legal experts have been struggling with the problem of where to try piracy cases for years.
Foreign forces have frequently caught pirates off Somalia, disarmed them and then put them back to sea because there is no local authority to deal with them.
Previous attempts to form an international tribunal have failed because of a lack of funding.
'Very sorry' During Muse's trial in a federal court in Manhattan, prosecutors described him as a ringleader of a gang of four pirates who seized the Maersk Abalama some 450km (280 miles) off the coast of Somalia.
Court documents said Muse was the first to board the vessel, firing his AK-47 assault rifle at Captain Richard Phillips.
On Tuesday, Muse said through an interpreter: "I am very, very sorry about what we did. All of this was about the problems in Somalia."
It is said to be the first piracy trial in the US in decades.
The vessel, which was carrying food aid, was seized by the four pirates in April 2009.
Capt Phillips then told his crew to lock themselves in a cabin and surrendered himself to safeguard his men.
He was later taken hostage in an enclosed lifeboat that was soon shadowed by US warships and a helicopter.
The stand-off only ended several days later when the US Navy intervened.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Hijacking off Cameroon

As Reported by EU NAVFOR


PIRATES from Cameroon have reportedly hijacked a Russian general cargo ship and taken its master and chief mechanic hostages.

North Spirit and its Russian-Ukrainian crew were hijacked yesterday, the Russian Professional Sailors Union told Interfax today. It was transporting 6,261 tonnes of fertilisers and soya.

“The ship was flying the flag of St Vincent & the Grenadines and was managed by the Greek company Balthellas Chartering,” the union said.

About 20 armed men took the 7,148dwt ship to Cameroon’s port of Douala, where the pirates disabled all radio and navigation equipment, and took valuables, computers, money and personal effects.

Captain Boris Tersintsev of Vladivostok and senior mechanic Igor Shumik were taken away to the pirates’ boat at gunpoint, while the rest of the crew was made to lie down on deck, said the union, which added: “The men's whereabouts are still unknown."

Russian authorities have not yet commented on the hijacking. One pirate was killed and 10 were captured when Russian forces stormed the hijacked oil tanker Moscow University a day after it was seized on 5 May.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Very Misleading Piracy Statistics

 As Reported HERE by Eurasia Review,
It is very misleading to give only statistics in the Gulf of Aden and leave out the rest of the piracy area in the Arabian Sean and Indian Ocean. This is one way they are trying to say how successful the naval forces have been. The reality is that though they have a significant decrease in the number of attacks in the Gulf of Aden, there has been a significant increase in attacks and hijackings outside the IRTC.
 
While pirate attacks in the Gulf of Aden had fallen from 20 per month in the summer of 2009, to between 4 and 5 today, the tenacity of pirates and level of their violence against mariners had changed over the years, said Rear Admiral Peter Hudson, Operations Commander of the European Union Naval Force in Somalia (EU NAVFOR) — Operation Atalanta, expressing hope that other countries would share in the asset-sapping task of combating the problem.

At a Headquarters press conference, Mr. Hudson said European forces protected humanitarian aid arriving to Somalia on World Food Programme (WFP) vessels, ensured supply of African Union logistics lines into Mombasa, Kenya, and protected the 30,000 or so ships that passed annually through the Gulf of Aden, among the world's busiest trade arteries.

Over the last six months, 32 WFP ships had been escorted into Somalia, delivering 350,000 tons of food to displaced persons. African Union troops had been safeguarded, and European forces had partnered with companies to provide security advice and coordinate activity.

In the Gulf of Aden, ship seizures — which had numbered nearly 25 in 2008 — had led to various Security Council resolutions and involved naval forces from China, the Russian Federation and Japan, he explained. Work in the Somali Basin was organized around monsoon season. Usually, the period between February and May saw a huge surge in the number of vessels put to sea for piracy.

This year, European forces had dismantled over 60 pirate groups and processed some 400 suspects — three times the number seen last year.

As there were not many avenues for prosecution, he said European forces must destroy equipment and ensure that suspects were returned home.

"It's a long progress," he said, noting that work was done through cooperation, dialogue with industry and, from a European Union perspective, a comprehensive political and military solution to piracy problems in Somalia.

Fielding a question on Somali pirates set adrift in the Gulf of Aden after an attempted attack on a Russian vessel, Mr. Hudson called that type of situation challenging. Some occasions were appropriate for such action. The experience of the Russian vessel was not without precedent, he said, citing similar instances involving Dutch and Danish ships. He could not comment on the individual operation, but, from European Union perspective, ensuring that the pirates were treated appropriately would be at the forefront of any operation.

To a critique that international forces had not paid sufficient attention to illegal fishing, he said such concerns were often aired as justification for piracy. The European forces' joint action plan had been amended so that fishing vessels were identified 200 miles off the Somali coast, and that such information would be relayed. He did note, however, that very little fishing activity had been seen inside 200 miles of the Somali coast, whether by Japanese or Spanish boats, or by local subsistence fishing communities.

To a question on how many captured pirates had been released, he said that, of 400 captured over about three months, 40 had gone on to prosecution.

Asked how equipped the European forces were to collect evidence, especially in the push to prosecute people, he said the heart of the matter involved ensuring that institutions were prepared to exercise their duties. Not many European States were prepared to bring pirates back for prosecution and he was grateful for the efforts by Kenya and the Seychelles in that regard. European forces worked to ensure that any evidential package prepared was in line with what institutions could handle.

Responding to a query on the latest tactics, he said pirates were tenacious and fearless, as travelling 600 or 700 miles off the Somali coast took courage. Generally, between 60 and 70 pirate groups would flood an area. They had seized a significant number of Taiwanese fishing vessels, which he suspected would be used to launch other attacks. They had adapted and refined their methods, allowing them more flexibility on the high seas.

Moreover, he said that pirates were often only 14 or 15 years old. The allure of lucrative, life-changing ransom money was attractive. He had come across many pirate ships that were in mechanical failure and a perilous humanitarian situation, and who actually had to be rescued.

Asked about any interviews conducted with former captives, he said the European forces worked with major merchant trade organizations and international chambers of shipping to ensure that, when vessels were released, the events of the attack could be recorded. That dialogue was important to European and other maritime forces.

To a question on the level of humanitarian aid into Somalia, he said the Al‑Shabaab insurgent group had forced WFP to scale back its activities. WFP shipments had to travel north from the WFP distribution centre in Mombasa and the European forces were trying to work with the flag States of ships taking part, perhaps in placing military forces on humanitarian vessels.

As for Kenya's decision to stop prosecuting pirates, he said those pirates transferred to Kenya over the last year continued to be processed. Brussels had a team in the region and the High Representative of the European Union would tour both Kenya and the Seychelles, among other places, to discuss that issue.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Latest ONI Report Threats to Shipping

 As Reported by the Office of Naval Intelligence
 
2.  Designation of a high threat area is based on an assessment of all source information relating 
to the existence of, or potential for piracy and other crime, terrorism, civil unrest or low intensity 
conflict.  Every effort is made to ensure that incidents are not double-counted.  In the event 
double counting is detected or an event is later learned not to be as initially reported, an 
explanation of the cancellation of the inaccurate report will be made in at least one message prior 
to dropping the erroneous report.  Specific incidents will be reported for one month.
.
3.  This week's reporting:
.
  A.  General cargo ship robbed 3 May 10, Palermo terminal, Barranquilla, Colombia.
.
  B.  Bulk carrier robbed 12 May 10, Callao anchorage, Peru.
.
  C.  General cargo ship reported suspicious approach 12 May 10, approximately 20NM east of 
  the Bab el Mandeb.
.
  D.  Chemical tanker (PANEGA) hijacked 11 May 10, approximately 120NM southeast of 
  Aden, Yemen.
.
  E.  SS (THE OCEANIC) fired upon 5 May 10, approximately 90NM southwest of Al Mukalla, 
  Yemen.
.
  F.  Container ship (MSC PEGGY) fired upon 12 May 10, approximately 300NM southeast of 
  Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
.
  G.  Bulk carrier (ELENI P) hijacked 12 May 10, approximately 420NM northeast of Socotra 
  Island.
.
  H.  Bulk carrier fired upon 10 May 10, approximately 640NM northeast of Port Victoria, 
  Seychelles.
.
  I.  Chemical tanker (MARIDA MARGUERITE) hijacked 8 May 10, approximately 140NM 
  northeast of Socotra Island.
.
  J.  Fishing vessel (TAI YUAN 227) hijacked 6 May 10, approximately 1150NM southeast of 
  Eyl, Somalia.
.
  K.  Bulk carrier (PERFORMER) boarded 10 May 10, approximately 3NM south of Tanjung 
  Ayam.
.
  L.  Container ship robbed 8 May 10, approximately 20NM northwest of Pulau Mangkai.
.
  M.  Bulk carrier reported attempted boarding 8 May 10, approximately 20NM northwest of 
  Pulau Mangkai.
.
4.  DETAILS:  There is reported active violence against shipping, a credible threat to shipping, 
or the potential to develop into a direct threat to the safety of shipping in the following areas:
.
  A.  NORTH AMERICA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  B.  CENTRAL AMERICA-CARIBBEAN:  
.
      1.  ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES:  Catamaran boarded 2 May 10 between the 
hours of 1845 – 2030, while berthed at Port Elizabeth.  Vessel had been left fully secured with all 
hatches locked, with some hatches set in the ventilation position.  While crew was away, an 
unknown number of persons boarded the vessel and attempted to force open the hatches.  The 
hatch over the master’s cabin was successfully forced open, possibly with the use of a steel bar 
or something similar, allowing full access to the rest of the cabin.  No further information 
provided (Noonsite.com).
.
  C.  SOUTH AMERICA:  
.
      1.  COLOMBIA:  General cargo ship robbed 3 May 10 at 2300 local time berthed in position 
10:57.5N – 074:45.5W, Palermo terminal, Barranquilla.  A vessel at berth had completed cargo 
operations and was preparing to depart.  The captain from the ship berthed ahead of them 
informed the gangway watch keeper that robbers had just stolen ship property from his ship and 
were making their way towards their ship.  The duty officer raised the alarm and due to the 
timely information provided by the ship’s captain, prevented any further incidents from 
occurring (IMB).
.
      2.  PERU:  Bulk carrier robbed 12 May 10 between 1830-1930 local time while anchored in 
position 12:01.7S – 077:12.1W, Callao anchorage.  Armed robbers boarded the vessel and took 
one shore guard hostage, and threatened him by pointing a gun to his head.  Another guard 
informed the bridge, who then raised the alarm and mustered the crew.  Local authorities were 
then informed.  The robbers broke open the bosun store door and escaped with ship’s stores 
before the patrol boat arrived on location (IMB).
.
  D.  ATLANTIC OCEAN AREA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  E.  NORTHERN EUROPE-BALTIC:  No current incidents to report.
.
  F.  MEDITERRANEAN-BLACK SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  G.  WEST AFRICA:
.
      1.  NIGERIA:  Bulk carrier robbed 4 May 10 at 0200 local time while anchored in position 
06:17.9N – 003:21.5E, Lagos outer anchorage.  Seven robbers armed with rifles and knives 
boarded the vessel during anchoring operations.  They assaulted the captain and 3rd officer, and 
damaged ship’s equipment before robbing the crew of personal belongings and escaping (IMB).
.
      2.  NIGERIA:  Tanker fired upon 27 Apr 10 at 2145 local time while in position 06:10.1N – 
003:20.92E, Lagos.  An officer on the vessel noticed on radar a boat approaching from the port 
bow.  When lights were directed at the boat, the boat stopped and turned towards another vessel.  
Later, the boat approached the tanker from astern.  The men in the boat opened fire at the vessel 
and attempted to board but failed due to razor wire around the deck and the vessel’s constant 
maneuvering.  All vessels in the vicinity were informed via VHF.  No injuries to the crew were 
reported (IMB).
.
      3.  DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO:  Tanker robbed 24 Apr 10 while anchored at 
Boma.  Robbers boarded the vessel and stole ship’s properties before escaping unnoticed.  No 
further details to provide (IMB).
.
  H.  INDIAN OCEAN-EAST AFRICA:
.
      1.  RED SEA:  Tanker reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0523 UTC while underway 
in position 13:48N – 043:00E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  Two skiffs 
were sighted at a distance of 1NM from the vessel.  One skiff approached the vessel at a high 
speed, with four armed men and a hook ladder visible.  Armed security personnel onboard fired 
several warning shots at the skiff forcing the armed men to abandon the pursuit (IMB).
.
      2.  RED SEA:  Bulk carrier reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0515 UTC while 
underway in position 13:46.2N – 042:57.7E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  
Vessel reported being chased by two high speed wooden boats with approximately six persons in 
each.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers.  After approximately 80 
minutes, the boats moved away (Operator, IMB).
.
      3.  GULF OF ADEN:  General cargo ship reported suspicious approach 12 May 10 at 1628 
local time while underway in position 12:27.7N – 043:43.4E, approximately 20NM east of the 
Bab el Mandeb.  Five boats each containing two to three persons armed with RPGs and 
automatic weapons approached the vessel from the port side and remained in close pursuit for 
approximately 10 minutes before eventually moving away (Operator, IMB).
.
      4.  GULF OF ADEN:  Chemical tanker (PANEGA) hijacked 11 May 10 at 1536 UTC while 
underway in position 12:31N – 047:08E, approximately 120NM southeast of Aden, Yemen.  
Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel along with its 15 crewmembers (AFP, IMB).
.
      5.  GULF OF ADEN:  SS (THE OCEANIC), a former passenger ship used by the Peace 
Boat, a Japan-based international non-governmental and non-profit organization to promote 
peace, fired upon 5 May 10 at 2122 UTC while underway in position 13:06N – 048:37E, 
approximately 90NM southwest of Al Mukalla, Yemen.  One skiff opened fire on the vessel with 
automatic weapons and RPGs.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers 
and was able to successfully avoid the attack.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB, 
Mercury chat, American Shipper Online).
.
      6.  GULF OF ADEN:  General cargo ship (THOR TRAVELLER) fired upon 14 Apr 10 at 
2345 UTC while underway in position 12:42N – 047:23E, approximately 125NM northwest of 
Bosasso, Somalia.  Approximately seven men armed with RPGs and guns in a skiff chased and 
opened fire on the vessel underway.  The captain conducted evasive maneuvers and contacted 
nearby warships for assistance, who later intercepted the skiff.  The vessel sustained damages 
from gunfire (IMB, CMF).
.
      7.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (MSC PEGGY) fired upon 12 May 10 at 1520 UTC 
while underway in position 09:59.12S – 042:16.27E, approximately 300NM southeast of Dar es 
Salaam, Tanzania.  Suspected pirates opened fire on the vessel with two RPG rounds.  The vessel 
conducted evasive maneuvers and increased to maximum speed of 17 knots (IMB, Mercury chat, 
Tradewinds).
.
      8.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (ELENI P) hijacked 12 May 10 at 0556 local time while 
underway in position 15:55N – 060:50E, approximately 420NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel with its 23 crewmembers and are sailing it towards the 
Somali coast (IMB, Reuters).
.
      9.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier fired upon 10 May 10 at 0538 UTC while underway in 
position 00:06N – 064:57E, approximately 640NM northeast of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  
Armed men in a skiff chased and fired upon the vessel underway.  The crew enforced effective 
counter piracy measures and evaded the attack, forcing the skiff to eventually move away.  The 
vessel sustained some damages from the gunfire (IMB).
.
      10.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Chemical tanker (MARIDA MARGUERITE) hijacked 8 May 10 at 
1206 UTC while underway in position 14:58N – 054:47E, approximately 140NM northeast of 
Socotra Island.  Armed pirates chased, attacked, and hijacked the vessel along with its 22 
crewmembers (IMB, AFP).
.
      11.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessel (TAI YUAN 227) hijacked 6 May 10 at 1107 UTC 
while underway in position 01:50N – 067:50E, approximately 1150NM southeast of Eyl, 
Somalia.  Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel along with its 28 crewmembers.  The vessel’s 
owner lost contact with the vessel as it transited toward the Maldives and upon resuming 
communications with it, he was told by hijackers to pay a ransom for the crew (AP, IMB, 
Mercury chat).
.
      12.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (OCEAN TRADER) fired upon 5 May 10 at 0520 UTC 
while underway in position 09:43S – 041:15E, approximately 210NM southeast of Dar es 
Salaam, Tanzania.  Armed men in a skiff chased the vessel underway and opened fire on it.  An 
embarked security team returned fire forcing the skiff to abort the attack and move away.  No 
crewmembers were injured (IMB, AFP, Mercury chat).
.
      13.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (MOSCOW UNIVERSITY) reportedly hijacked 5 May 10 at 
0413 UTC while underway in position 12:15N – 059:30E, approximately 290NM east of Socotra 
Island.  Pirates in a skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The captain conducted evasive 
maneuvers and contacted a nearby warship for assistance.  The owners informed they had lost 
contact with the vessel and that it was no longer moving.  The crew reportedly locked themselves 
in the rudder room and pirates were onboard.  No further information to provide at this time 
(IMB, AP, Mercury chat).
.
      14.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0348 UTC while underway in 
position 17:59N – 065:49E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  Six men armed 
with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The 
vessel contacted coalition forces, increased speed, and conducted evasive maneuvers.  The men 
attempted to board the vessel several times before finally aborting the attack.  No injuries to the 
crew were reported (IMB).
.
      15.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (ISUZUGAWA) fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0215 UTC while 
underway in position 18:06N – 065:47E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Four men armed with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on 
the vessel.  The vessel raised the alarm, sent out a distress call, increased speed and conducted 
evasive maneuvers, while the crew locked all accommodation doors.  The armed men tried to 
board the vessel using a steel ladder and hooks attached to ropes.  They fired an RPG at the 
accommodation and the ship continued with evasive maneuvering.  After several attempts, the 
men aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB, MSCHOA).
.
      16.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (PYXIS DELTA) fired upon 23 Apr 10 at 0242 UTC while 
underway in position 14:51N – 065:14E, approximately 640NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Five armed men in a skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel with RPGs and automatic 
weapons.  The master conducted evasive maneuvers and contacted coalition forces for 
assistance.  The vessel raised their alarm and increased speed.  The armed men chased the vessel 
for more than an hour and aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew or damage to the vessel 
was reported (IMB, Tradewinds).
.
      17.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier fired upon 21 Apr 10 at 1050 UTC while underway in 
position 01:10.05N – 065:00.08E, approximately 665NM northeast of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  
Four men in a blue skiff armed with RPGs and automatic weapons opened fire on the vessel for 
approximately three minutes.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers, 
forcing the attackers to abandon the attempt (IMB, Operator).
.
      18.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (VOC DAISY) hijacked 21 Apr 10 at 0605 UTC while 
underway in position 16:25N – 057:13E, approximately 280NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Suspected pirates in skiffs boarded and hijacked the vessel, taking 21 crewmembers hostage (AP, 
IMB).
.
      19.  INDIAN OCEAN:  French warship (FS SOMME) fired upon 19 Apr 10 at 2101 UTC 
while underway approximately 400NM southeast of Mogadishu, Somalia.  Two skiffs opened 
fire on the ship, causing the SOMME to return fire with warning shots.  When the skiffs 
attempted to flee, the SOMME pursued the skiffs and was able to capture one, detaining four 
suspected pirates (Reuters, MSCHOA).
.
      20.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker fired upon 18 Apr 10 at 0725 UTC while underway in 
position 09:29N – 068:56E, approximately 865NM southeast of Socotra Island and 430NM west 
of Kochi, India.  Four men in a skiff armed with RPGs opened fire on the vessel.  Counter-piracy 
measures were enforced and an embarked security team fired warning shots at the skiff, forcing 
them to abort the attack.  No casualties to the crew or ship were reported (IMB, Operator).
.
      21.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessels (PRANTALAY 11) (PRANTALAY 12) 
(PRANTALAY 14) hijacked 18 Apr 10 at 0200 UTC while underway in position 09:29N – 
069:18E, approximately 230NM northwest of Minicoy Island, India.  Armed men in skiffs 
opened fire on the three fishing vessels and ordered them to stop.  They boarded and hijacked the 
vessels to possibly use as motherships.  The three Thai vessels have 77 total crewmembers 
onboard (AP, IMB, Operator).
.
      22.  BANGLADESH:  General cargo ship robbed 1 May 10 at 0440 local time while moored 
in position 22:16N – 091:49E, Chittagong anchorage.  Three robbers armed with longknives 
boarded the vessel while it was conducting cargo operations at a mooring buoy.  The duty watch 
noticed the robbers, who then tried to catch him.  The watch ran to the gangway and informed 
another crewmember who then raised the alarm.  The robbers stole ship’s stores and escaped 
upon seeing the crew alertness.  The coast guard was informed (IMB).
.
  I.  RED SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  J.  PERSIAN GULF:  No current incidents to report.
.
  K.  SOUTHEAST ASIA:
.
      1.  MALAYSIA:  Bulk carrier (PERFORMER) boarded 10 May 10 at 0355 local time while 
anchored in position 01:17.84N – 104:09E, approximately 3NM south of Tanjung Ayam.  Six to 
seven robbers armed with knives boarded the vessel and gained access to the engine room before 
being discovered by a crewmember who alerted the bridge.  The master dispatched other 
crewmembers to investigate.  The crew made a thorough search of the vessel but was unable to 
located any of the robbers.  No crewmembers were injured and nothing was reported stolen 
(ReCAAP).
.
      2.  MALAYSIA:  Chemical tanker reported attempted boarding 22 Apr 10 at 0300 local time 
while anchored in position 01:19.8N – 104:16.1E, Eastern OPL anchorage.  Three robbers in a 
boat attempted to board the vessel. The duty watchman on deck spotted the robbers and raised 
the alarm, forcing them to abort the attempt.  No casualties were reported (IMB).
.
      3.  MALAYSIA:  Tanker (SEMUA GEMBIRA) robbed 17 Apr 10 at 0600 local time while 
anchored in position 01:18.42N – 104:12.7E, approximately 1NM south of Tanjung Ayam.  Six 
robbers armed with swords and parangs boarded the vessel via the poop deck.  They tied up the 
greaser in the engine room and stole ship’s engine parts. The watch officer spotted them and 
raised the alarm to muster the crew, but the robbers managed to escape (ReCAAP, IMB).
.
      4.  STRAIT OF MALACCA:  Tanker reported suspicious approach 17 Apr 10 at 1055 local 
time while underway in position 04:02.3N – 099:45E, approximately 55NM northwest of Lumut, 
Malaysia.  One fishing boat with a few persons onboard approached the tanker while drifting.  
The master suspected persons intended to board the vessel and sounded the alarm.  The vessel 
conducted counter-piracy measures and activated fire hoses.  The boat stayed close to the vessel 
for sometime before eventually moving away (IMB).
.
      5.  INDONESIA:  Chemical tanker (SINAR BUSAN) robbed 2 May 10 at 0130 local time 
while anchored in the port of Anyer.  Six robbers armed with knives boarded the vessel via the 
stern from a small boat using ropes and grapnel hooks.  The robbers threatened the watch 
keepers and forced them to open the door to the engine room.  The robbers stole some engine 
spares and escaped via the small boat.  No crewmembers were injured (ReCAAP).
.
      6.  INDONESIA:  Tug (ATLANTIC 3) reportedly hijacked 27 Apr 10 at 1726 local time 
while underway in position 01:12.38N – 104:45.92E, approximately 9NM east of Pulau Bintan.  
At 1726 local time, the shipping company lost contact with the vessel as it was transiting from 
Tanjung Ayam, Malaysia to Kintap, Indonesia.  The last known position was 01:12.38N – 
104:45.92E.  The company reported the incident to Singapore’s POCC (ReCAAP).
.
      7.  INDONESIA:  General cargo ship robbed 20 Apr 10 at 0345 local time while anchored at 
Tanjung Priok.  Four robbers armed with long knives boarded the vessel.  The duty watch 
noticed one robber coming out from the port side entrance and immediately informed the officer 
on watch who raised the alarm.  The robbers escaped with stolen ship’s equipment (IMB).
.
      8.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Container ship robbed 8 May 10 at 1720 UTC while underway in 
position 03:16N – 105:25E, approximately 20NM northwest of Pulau Mangkai.  Eight men 
armed with long knives boarded the vessel and gained control of the bridge.  They stole ship’s 
and crew’s property before escaping.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB).
.
      9.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Bulk carrier reported attempted boarding 8 May 10 at 1645 UTC 
while underway in position 03:22.3N – 105:27.2E, approximately 20NM northwest of Pulau 
Mangkai.  Six armed men in an unlit small wooden boat approached and attempted to board the 
vessel.  The alert crew noticed the boat and raised the alarm.  The ship’s whistle was sounded, 
deck lights switched on, and the crew mustered.  The armed men aborted the attempted boarding 
upon seeing the crew’s alertness.  A security message was transmitted via VHF warning other 
ships in the vicinity (IMB).
.
      10.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug fired upon 1 May 10 at 2230 local time while underway in 
position 03:38N - - 103:45E, approximately 28NM southeast of Kuantan, Malaysia.  Robbers in 
a boat attacked the tug towing a barge and attempted to board.  The crew fired rocket parachute 
flares at the boat and sent a distress call via VHF Ch. 16.  A Malaysian warship in the vicinity 
responded and dispatched a helicopter to render assistance.  The boat managed to escape before 
the helicopter arrived.  Malaysian authorities are investigating (IMB).
.
      11.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug (PU 2402) robbed 27 Apr 10 at 2138 local time while 
underway in position 04:44.16N – 103:58E, approximately 70NM northeast of Kuantan, 
Malaysia.  Seven robbers in a small boat came along the port side of the vessel.  Six of the 
robbers boarded the vessel while one of them armed with a parang waited in the boat.  The ship 
master managed to activate the vessel’s SSAS, but was disabled by one of the robbers.  All nine 
crew was led to the master’s cabin with their hands tied.  The robbers threatened the crew with 
machetes, demanding they hand over their cash and valuables.  The incident lasted 
approximately 30 minutes.  The robbers left the tug taking with them cash, a laptop, and the 
crew’s mobile phones.  The incident was reported to Singapore’s Port Operation and Control 
Centre (ReCAAP).
.
      12.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug (PU 2007), towing barge (PU 3316) reportedly hijacked 19 
Apr 10 at 2328 local time while underway in position 04:25.51N – 104:18.92E, approximately 
57NM northeast of Kuantan, Malaysia.  The tug activated its SSAS while underway at the above 
position and subsequently every 30 minutes after that.  Suspected that it had been hijacked, the 
owners reported the incident.  It is assessed that the tug and barge had deviated from its planned 
course and heading easterly.  The last assessed position of the tug is approximately 91NM east 
northeast of Kuantan, heading easterly at almost 4 knots towards the Philippines.  On 20 Apr 10 
at 1525 local time, the barge was spotted at position 04:29.9N – 104:56.8E, approximately 
105NM east northeast of Kuantan (ReCAAP).
.
      13.  VIETNAM:  Container ship robbed 28 Apr 10 at 1848 UTC while anchored at Vung 
Tau.  Two robbers boarded the vessel at anchor.  The duty watchman spotted the robbers and 
immediately raised the alarm.  The robbers managed to escape with ship’s stores.  Port authority 
was informed (IMB).
.
      14.  VIETNAM:  Tanker robbed 21 Apr 10 at 0308 local time while anchored in position 
10:13.7N – 107:05E, Vung Tau.  Armed men boarded the tanker.  The duty watchman from the 
bridge spotted the robbers and raised the ship’s alarm.  The robbers escaped with ship’s stores.  
Port authority was informed (IMB).
.
  L.  NORTH ASIA: No current incidents to report.
.
  M.  PACIFIC-ANTARCTIC OCEAN:  No current incidents to report.
.
  N.  ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC NON-STATE ACTIVIST GROUPS:  No current 
incidents to report.
.
5.  Originator of this WWTTS report requests consumer feedback. Originator will incorporate all 
anti-shipping events and violence against the maritime industry into this weekly message where
appropriate.  The Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) can be contacted via message traffic at ONI 
WASHINGTON DC//11// or, the ONI violence at sea (VAS) desk may be contacted at comm. 
Phone (301) 669-4784 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              (301) 669-4784      end_of_the_skype_highlighting or via e-mail at amoulder@nmic.navy.mil.//

Friday, May 14, 2010

Piracy Weather Conditions

I just thought that I would post todays weather conditions and tell of a coming projected storm track. The weather for pirates has been favorable lately. However, as you can see on the charts below, there are a couple areas that are projected to get rather nasty. I realize that the images may be rather small here and difficult to read the wind, but towards Tuesday and Wednesday the projections around the storm area are around 40+ knots. This would make it more than difficult for skiffs to work in those areas. That being said, the areas to the East will remain rather calm with winds stayin at about 10 knots.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

MV Eleni P Hijacked

As Reported By EUNAVFOR
The Liberien flagged, Greek owned, Eleni P was reported to have been hijacked 250 nautical miles off the coast of Oman on the morning of 12 May. The bulk carrier of 72,119 deadweight and crew of 26 (23 Filipinos, 2 Romanian and 1 Indian) was on route to Kandla in India when taken by pirates. The crew are reported to be safe and EU NAVFOR is monitoring.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

MV Panega Hijacked

 As Reported HERE

This afternoon 11th of May a Bulgaria flagged ship, MV PANEGA, was hijacked in the Gulf of Aden approximately 100 nautical miles east of Aden (Yemen).
The ship was on route from the Red Sea to India when she was attacked by pirates.
MV PANGEA with a dead weight of 5,848 tonnes, has a crew of 15 all Bulgarian. EU NAVFOR will continue to monitor the situation.
EU NAVFOR Somalia – Operation ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the World Food Programme (WFP) and vessels of African Union Mission in Somalia, AMISOM and to protect vulnerable vessels in the Gulf  of Aden and Indian Ocean and to deter and disrupt piracy. EU NAVFOR also monitors fishing activity off the coast of

Monday, May 10, 2010

Really Bad Maritime Security Plan

As Reported HERE
In reading this article I had a really bad feeling. This type of idea to issue letters of Marque to private security out on the Ocean to hunt pirates, is a situation creating unmitigated risk. It was hard enough to control the actions of private security companies on land, how much more difficult would it be on the water?

Hunting pirates and taking direct action against them is the job of the navy, private security should maintain a role of pure defense. Should governments desire to contract to private security to play a purely defensive role in the protection of vessels, I am all for it. However, to hire private security to "Hunt" pirates, is a disaster waiting to happen.

MOGADISHU, Somalia, May 10 (UPI) -- As Somali pirates extend their operation deeper into the Indian Ocean, Western private security firms are seeking to re-establish the centuries-old system of "letters of marque and reprisal" that allows privateers to pursue maritime marauders.
The system was introduced by King Edward III of England in the Middle Ages but it is also on U.S. statute books as Article One, paragraph 8, clauses 10 and 11, of the U.S. Constitution, and in Title 33 of the U.S. Code, paragraphs 385 and 386.
Maj. Theodore Richard, a lawyer in the Commercial Litigation Division of the U.S. Air Force, published a lengthy article in favor of reviving letters of marque in the Public Contract Law Journal in April.
On April 15, 2009, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, advocated the use of letters of marque and reprisal against the Somali pirates. The bills he introduced weren't passed.
Paul was instrumental in introducing the Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001 in Congress following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. He maintained the hijacking of U.S. airliners constituted air piracy and he wanted to grant the president the authority to issue letters of marque and reprisal against specific terrorists.
He raised the issue again on July 21, 2007, but Congress has made no move toward invoking the constitution to combat piracy.
Still, Intelligence Online, a Paris Web site that covers global security issues, reports that "several private security firms" are pressing for the U.S. government and other Western authorities to re-establish letters of marque.
These would sanction private companies to actively hunt down pirates rather than just provide security teams aboard commercial vessels. That would be in line with the wide-scale outsourcing of security missions to private security companies who are active in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan in support of U.S. and allied forces.
Allowing armed privateers to combat piracy in the Gulf of Aden would supplement U.S. and European naval task forces off Somalia.
But it could be applied to other key maritime zones such as the Atlantic off oil-rich West Africa, the Red Sea, the Strait of Malacca and the South China Sea where pirates are active.
As Somali pirates conduct operations further afield from the Gulf of Aden, in part because of international naval intervention, there is a growing need for more warships to protect shipping lanes across the Indian Ocean, a key energy artery between the Gulf and Asia.
Among the firms showing interest in the issue is Espada Logistics & Security Group of San Antonio, Intelligence Online reports.
Espada has a fleet of five patrol vessels deployed in the Gulf of Aden working for shipping companies but Intelligence Online says "it is looking into offering its services to governments as a pirate hunter."
Espada has hired former employees of Xe Services, formerly known as Blackwater. In 2008, Blackwater, which was heavily engaged in Iraq following the 2003 invasion, purchased a research vessel, the MacArthur, and turned it into a private warship to fight pirates in the Gulf of Aden.
Only two private security companies are known to have actually secured government contracts to pursue the Somalia pirates. One is a British outfit called Hart, which was hired by Puntland, an independent enclave in northeastern Somalia, in exchange for payment in fishing licenses. The other is Nordic Crisis Management of Norway which has been working for Somaliland, another independent enclave, since 2006, with funding from Norway.
Intelligence Online reports that other private security firms, including Topcat Marine Security and Northbridge Services Group of the United States, Odyssey Consulting of Switzerland and Secopex of France signed anti-piracy deals with Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, but "their performance did not amount to much."
The first recorded use of letters of marque and reprisal was an English statute in 1354 during the reign of Edward III. This led to the exploits of English raiders such as Sir Francis Drake, who famously ravaged Spanish shipping in the name of Queen Elizabeth I in the 16th century.
During the American Revolution, state legislatures and later the Continental Congress authorized letters of marque. These were also issued to combat the Barbary pirates in the early 19th century but none has been legitimately issued by the United States since then.

The last thing we need is a bunch of trigger happy hacks on the water shooting everything in site, unsupervised.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Two More Vessels Hijacked

As Reported HERE


NAIROBI, Kenya – Somali pirates armed with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic guns hijacked a chemical tanker off East Africa with 22 crew members on board, the European Union Naval force said Saturday.
Spokesman Cmdr. John Harbour said there is little chance that military forces can storm the ship because officials don't believe the crew all made it to a safe room before the pirates boarded. The crew consists of 19 Indians, 2 Bangladeshis and 1 Ukrainian, he said. The ship — the Marida Marguerite — was heading from India to Belgium.
Also Saturday, Taiwan's Foreign Ministry said a Taiwanese fishing boat was hijacked off the Somali coast by pirates who demanded a ransom for the crew.
The ship's Taiwanese owner lost contact with Tai Yuan 227 two days ago as it headed for the Maldives. When the owner resumed contact with the vessel a day later, he was told by hijackers to pay a ransom for the crew, the ministry said.
"The boat has since changed direction to sail toward Somalia, so this may very well have been done by the Somali pirates," the ministry said in a statement. "We hope that the many other boats sailing in the area can stay alert and avoid the pirates from launching an attack at other boats from the Tai Yuan 227."
It wasn't immediately clear how many crew were aboard the trawler.
Foreign Ministry officials refused to provide contact information for the boat's owner, saying he wanted to remain anonymous until the crew was released.
Pirate attacks have continued to climb despite the presence of about 35 international warships patrolling the waters off the lawless Somalia coast.
Pirates currently hold more than 300 hostages taken from ships attacked off East Africa in the last several months. Eleven suspected Somali pirates were indicted in U.S. federal court late last month, but the international community has had problems formulating an accepted policy to try and jail pirate suspects.
Pirates boarded the Russian tanker Moscow University off the coast of Somalia on Wednesday. They were arrested Thursday after special forces from a Russian warship stormed the tanker. A gunbattle ensued in which one pirate was killed, and 10 others were detained.
The pirates seized were released because of "imperfections" in international law, Russia's Defense Ministry said Friday, a claim that sparked skepticism — and even suspicion the pirates might have been killed.
Anarchy has reigned in Somalia since 1991, when warlords overthrew longtime dictator Mohamed Siad Barre and then turned on each other. The weak Somali government controls only a small bit of the capital, Mogadishu, and is battling Islamic insurgents. The lawlessness has allowed the piracy trade to flourish off Somalia's coastline.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Russian Navy Frees Pirates

As Reported HERE


MOSCOW – The pirates seized by a Russian warship off the coast of Somalia have been released because of "imperfections" in international law, Russia's Defense Ministry said Friday.
Authorities initially said the pirates would be brought to Russia to face criminal charges after hijacking a Russian oil tanker. But Defense Ministry spokesman Col. Alexei Kuznetsov told The Associated Press on Friday that the pirates have been released.
Kuznetsov declined to elaborate on the purported legal flaws that prompted the release.
The Law of the Seas Convention, to which Russia is a signatory, says that the courts of a country that seizes a pirated vessel on the high seas has the right to decide what penalties are to be imposed. However, some countries are wary of hauling in pirates for trial for fear of being saddled with them after they serve prison terms.
Kuznetsov appeared to echo those concerns when asked why the pirates who seized the tanker were released.
"Why should we feed some pirates?" he said.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday had hinted at potential tough punishment for the pirates, saying "perhaps we should get back to the idea of establishing an international court and other legal tools" to prosecute pirates. "Until then, we'll have to do what our forefathers did when they met the pirates," he said.
The pirates boarded the tanker Moscow University on Wednesday. They were arrested Thursday after special forces from a Russian warship stormed the tanker. A gunbattle ensued in which one pirate was killed; 10 others were arrested.
The warship opened with warning fire from large-caliber machine guns and a 30mm artillery complex, the Russian Defense Ministry said. Special forces troops then rappelled down to the tanker from a helicopter, Rear Adm. Jan Thornqvist, the European Union Naval Force commander, told an Associated Press reporter aboard the Swedish warship Carlskrona, which was patrolling 500 miles (800 kilometers) west of the rescue site.
The tanker's 23 crew members, who had taken refuge in a safe room, were not injured.
Suspected pirates are in custody and awaiting trial in France, the Netherlands and the United States.
Several countries are now calling for piracy cases to be prosecuted in the Kenyan port city of Mombasa. The United States, Britain and European Union have now signed agreements allowing for piracy suspects to be handed over to Kenya for trial.
But there are doubts that Kenya — which is still recovering from postelection turmoil in 2007 that left more than 1,000 people dead — would be able to handle the costly and complicated task of trying all or even most cases that emerge from the exploding piracy crisis in the Indian Ocean.
Some countries reportedly have dumped detained pirates back into lawless Somalia.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Russian War Ship Frees Tanker

As Reported HERE




The Liberian hijacked tanker Moscow University, which was hijacked yesterday, has been dramatically freed by the Russian warship, the MARSHAL SHAPOSHNIKOV.
Yesterday morning the Liberian flagged (Russian operated) oil tanker, MOSCOW UNIVERSITY, was hijacked approximately 350 miles east of Socatra. It was reported that the crew had locked themselves into the “rudder compartment” and a Maritime Patrol aircraft made contact with the crew a few hours later to confirm that they were safe. A Russian warship, Marshal Shaposhidov, was reported to be heading at full speed towards the hijack position. EU Naval Forces and other units from the multinational forces in the area offered support to the Russian ship and a German Maritime Patrol aircraft from CMF 151 were put on alert to support any operation.
Early this morning, the Marshal Shaposhnikov arrived at the oil tanker Moscow University’s position and sent a helicopter to investigate. The helicopter was fired upon by the pirates holding the ship. The Russian warship, knowing the crew were locked down and safe, returned fire on the pirates. Eventually the pirates surrendered and a boarding team from the Marshal Shaposhnikov arrived onboard the Tanker, captured all the pirates and freed the crew. All the crew are safe and well.
EU NAVFOR Somalia – Operation ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the World Food Programme (WFP) and vessels of African Union Mission in Somalia, AMISOM and to protect vulnerable vessels in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean and to deter and disrupt piracy. EU NAVFOR also monitors fishing activity off the coast of Somalia.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Anti Piracy Forces Playing Pirates

As Reported HERE



MUKALLA, Yemen: The Russian Navy has been accused of attacking Yemeni fishermen and destroying seven fishing boats in an incident last month, Arab News learned on Wednesday following a sit-in demonstration in the coastal city of Mukalla by Yemeni fishermen. They claim harassment by naval armadas is getting more aggressive.
"They used to mistreat us at sea but would set us free with our possessions," said Awadh Abdullah Bamagad, a 30-year-old Yemeni fisherman. "Now they don't just confiscate fishermen's proprieties, they destroy the boats."
Bamagad and others described one incident that occurred on the morning of April 5 about 112 km from the coastal city of Qusay'ir when a helicopter gunship fired on a number of fishing boats.
"We stopped fishing and decided to head back home because we were so terrified and thought it would come again," said Bamagad.
The helicopter returned and signaled for the fishermen to head west toward a warship. The men described the vessel as bearing the number 543 and flying a white flag with a blue cross -- the Russian Navy's ensign. As they approached the ship, they saw 19 other fishermen held on board under armed surveillance.
The number and flag description indicates that the warship was the Udaloy-class destroyer RFN Marshal Shaposhnikov.
The Russian Federation Navy reported on its website in April that the Marshal Shaposhnikov was "escorting a convoy of 4 vessels through uneasy waters of Gulf of Aden and Horn of Africa where pirate assaults are ordinary."
On Wednesday, the BBC reported that the destroyer was still in the area, having been dispatched to assist a Russian oil tanker that had been hijacked by pirates 800 km off the Somali coast.
Standing by the remains of his fishing boat destroyed by the Russians, Bamagad said the crew of the destroyer had robbed them.
"They rifled though our boats, taking our money, IDs, GPS units and even asked us to remove our clothes," said Bamagad.
The men were all placed on one of the vessel and ordered to return to Yemen.
"We waited for a moment hoping that they might bring back our stolen possessions," said Bamagad. "Instead, they fired behind the boat to force us to leave."
The fishermen managed to recover the burnt remains of one of the boats, which have been put on display in the city of Mukalla to bring people's attention to their ordeal. The fishermen claim that they've endured about YER30 million ($140,000) worth of damage from these searches and seizures.
It is not just the Russian Navy. Other Yemeni fishermen have complained about similar incidents involving the Indian Navy. They say the forces deployed to fight piracy in the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Aden are often as dangerous as the pirates themselves.
Another group of fishermen from Qusay'ir told Arab News that the Indian naval officers physically abused them.
Awadh Al-Haddad, 47, was among a crew of 17 fishermen fishing about 144 km off Ras Fartak recently when a blue Indian Naval helicopter swooped low and asked them to stop. The fishermen said seven armed Indian soldiers approached them in a rubber dinghy dispatched from a warship. Two of the men boarded the fishing vessel while the others kept armed vigilance.
Haddad said the soldiers beat some of the fishermen with scuba flippers and tossed two of them into the water as punishment for questioning their authority.
"They struck 11 of us and left them in the water where there are sharks," said Haddad. "It was a terrible scene. When they saw the Yemeni flag, they said 'Yemen' and refused to talk to us."
After inspecting the boat, they left "as if we were animals," the fisherman said.
Stories of mistreatment by the armadas of big countries are common in the fishing villages along Yemen's coast, home to an estimated 120,000 fishermen whose sole source of income is fishing the waters where armadas and pirates are playing a vast game of cat-and-mouse.
Fed up with what they view as illegal searches and seizures and maltreatment by judgmental, armed naval powers in lawless waters, fishermen are demanding relief.
After a heated discussion with the governor of Yemen's Hadramaut province, the fishermen agreed to suspend their sit-in after the governor promised to bring up the problem in Sana'a. The fishermen have demanded that countries whose navies destroy their boats or equipment should be required to pay restitution.
The Yemeni Fishermen Union issued a strongly worded statement condemning the attacks on the fishermen.
"These cases of the fishermen being mistreated or physically abused have repeatedly happened, involving the Indian forces in particular," said the statement. "The serious turn of sabotaging boats will have a negative impact on the lives of the fishermen."
Abdullah Saeed Sa'adian, the head of Qusay'ir Fishermen Union, said his members are regularly harassed and even fired upon by naval forces. But now the fishermen say the destruction of vessels is a new phenomenon, indicating that the situation is getting worse.
"The serious turn in their misbehavior — of blowing up boats — is intolerable," said Sa'adian. "The (navy) ships have become a source of terror in the sea."
Yemen has expressed resentment over the frequent attacks on the fishermen.
Foreign Minister Abu Baker Al-Qiribi said that Yemen is demanding compensation from responsible parties, calling for a quick resolution to incidents that occur where fishermen are treated like criminals. Al-Qiribi said Yemen has debriefed ambassadors from the US, Russia, Japan, India, China and EU countries about the problem.

Russian oil tanker seized by Somali pirates

AS Reported HERE


MOMBASA, Kenya — Somali pirates seized control of an oil-laden Russian tanker in the Gulf of Aden early Wednesday, setting up a high-seas standoff with a Russian destroyer steaming to the zone.
The 230-metre (755 foot)-long Moscow University was heading east from the Gulf of Aden early Wednesday when it was boarded by pirates around 350 nautical miles off the Yemeni coast, the EU anti-piracy mission said.
The ship's Russian operator said the tanker had been on its way to China from the Red Sea with 86,000 tonnes of crude oil, believed to be worth around 50 million dollars.
A large anti-submarine ship, the Marshal Shaposhnikov, had been sent to the zone. The warship, part of the Russian fleet engaged in the EU's anti-piracy mission NAVFOR, has two helicopters and an infantry unit on board.
The 23 all-Russian crew of the Moscow University were unharmed, the ship's operators Novoship said.
"According to the latest information received from the master none of the 23 seafarers on board have been hurt, the vessel and the cargo sustained no damage," said Novoship, adding that communications with the vessel had been cut at 0450 GMT.
It said the attack began around 50 minutes earlier when the pirates opened fire and tried to board the vessel. The captain managed to inform naval forces in the region before his radio was silenced.
A EUNAVFOR commander, Read Admiral Jan Thornqvist, said in the Kenyan port of Mombasa that the tanker was "hijacked approximately 350 nautical miles east of Socatra," the Yemeni island in the Gulf of Aden, as it cruised east for China.
Thornqvist said the vessel "was attacked by just one skiff" whose occupants managed to scale the sides of the tanker. The crew had been locked into a cabin as the pirates took control.
NAVFOR said the tanker had not registered with the Maritime Security Center Horn of Africa for its transit through the Gulf of Aden.
The seizure of the Moscow University is a jolt to the international anti-piracy system put in place along one of the world's busiest shipping routes.
The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) said recently the presence of numerous foreign warships in the Gulf was proving an effective deterrent, with 17 attacks there in the first quarter of 2010, down from 41 a year earlier.
The capture of the 106,000 tonne tanker immediately drew comparisons with the Sirius Star, a larger tanker which was carrying a full load of two million barrels of crude oil when it was hijacked in November 2008.
It was taken to the pirate lair of Harardhere on the Somali coast and held for two months before being released for a reported ransom of three million dollars.
In a separate incident Wednesday, a 40,000-tonne South Korean-flagged cargo ship, the Ocean Trader, escaped an attack by pirates just hours after the seizure of the tanker.
"The ship ... managed to evade the attack and all personnel are reported to be well," NAVFOR spokesman John Harbour said.
The attempted attack took place in the Indian Ocean, some 200 nautical miles north-west of the Comoros archipelago.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Haradheere Seized by Hizbul Islam

Somali insurgents seize pirate haven

MOGADISHU
Sun May 2, 2010 8:19am EDT

MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Somali insurgent group Hizbul Islam seized the pirate haven of Haradheere on Sunday without a fight and pledged to take control of more towns in the region, the rebel group said.
Haradheere, and Hobyo further up the coast, are two of the main bases for pirates operating out of Somalia. The gunmen have made tens of millions of dollars by hijacking merchant vessels, bringing them to the coast and demanding ransoms.
So far, neither Hizbul Islam nor al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab rebels have been directly involved in piracy, a business that has flourished in the absence of strong government and any rule of law in the Horn of Africa nation.
"Our Mujahideen fighters are in Haradheere now, they will cross into the other towns in the region," Sheikh Mohamed Osman Arus, Hizbul Islam spokesman, told Reuters.
He denied the group wanted to get involved in piracy.
Pirates in Haradheere, however, said Hizbul Islam sent agents to the coastal town demanding a slice of the business a few days ago, but the pirates refused.
"They came into the town, they want to have their own pirates in here and oust us," said a pirate called Hassan, who was fleeing the town, told Reuters.
"Some of their agents came to us two days ago and asked us to work with them and pay. We rejected this and they entered today," he said.
HOSTAGES
Hizbul Islam and al Shabaab have been fighting to topple the Western-backed government since the start of 2007. More than 21,000 civilians have been killed in the failed state since the start of the insurgency.
Andrew Mwangura, coordinator of the East African Seafarers' Assistance Programme, said there were three hijacked vessels being held at Haradheere at the moment, the UBT Ocean, MV Rak Afrikana and the Sakoba.
Islamist fighters with the Islamic Courts Union, a movement that briefly ruled the capital Mogadishu in 2006 before being ousted by Ethiopian soldiers, clamped down on Somali piracy as they tried to impose law and order.
"But I'm afraid this time around it might put the lives of the hostages in danger," Mwangura told Reuters.
Some residents said they feared Haradheere would now become a battleground if the pro-government moderate Sufi Muslim group Ahlu Sunna Waljamaca came to fight Hizbul Islam.
(Writing by David Clarke; editing by Philippa Fletcher)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

April 29th ONI Piracy Report


29 Apr 10
.
Office of Naval Intelligence
Civil Maritime Analysis Department
Worldwide Threat to Shipping
Mariner Warning Information
.
POC:  Andrew Moulder:
Comm (301) 669-4784
Fax (301) 669-3247
E-mail amoulder@nmic.navy.mil

Tyrone Wheeler:
Comm (301) 669-3662
Fax (301) 669-3247
E-mail twheeler@nmic.navy.mil
.
1.  This message provides information on threats to, and criminal action against merchant 
shipping worldwide in the last 30 days.
.
  A.  To aid in our reporting, please add the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) as an information 
addressee when possible to your normal corporate and organizational reporting requirements.
The ONI message address is ONI WASHINGTON DC//11// or, the ONI Violence at Sea (VAS) 
desk may be contacted at commercial phone (301) 669-4784 or via e-mail: 
amoulder@nmic.navy.mil. Report may also be made to the National Response Center (U.S. 
Coast Guard) hotline: 1-800-424-8802 or the Maritime Administration, Office of Security, 
MAR-420; TEL 202-366-1883; FAX 202-366-3954; email owen.doherty@dot.gov.

ONI's goal is to provide the maritime community with relevant information concerning 
threats to safe commercial ship operations for use by maritime personnel in implementing 
security.  In order to promote consistent use of accurate terms of reference, the following are 
adopted to describe the range of criminal anti-shipping activity and impediments to safe 
navigation in our worldwide reporting and analysis:
Boarding - Unauthorized presence on the ship whether in port or underway. 
Robbery - Theft from a vessel or from persons aboard the vessel. 
Kidnap - Unauthorized forcible removal of persons belonging to the vessel from it. 
Hijack - Unauthorized seizure and retention of a vessel by persons not part of its complement. 
Firing upon - Weapons discharged at or toward a vessel. 
Attempted boarding - Close approach or hull-to-hull contact with report that boarding 
paraphernalia were employed or visible in the approaching boat.
Suspicious approach - All other unexplained close proximity of an unknown vessel. 
Blocking - Hampering safe navigation, docking, or undocking of a vessel as a means of protest. 
Please note that these terms relate to observable activity and are independent of target vessel status 
and exclude actions by governmental authorities in lawful pursuit of their authority.  ONI 
welcomes comment and suggestions for addition or amendment.

3.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Spain captures eight suspected Somali pirates, 25 Apr 10.  The 
Spanish navy captured eight suspected pirates off the coast of Somalia on Sunday as part of 
Europe's counter-piracy mission in the area, the Defense Ministry said.  The Spanish frigate 
VICTORIA captured a whaleboat and various skiffs, on which the ministry said arms and other 
materials suitable for use in pirate attacks were discovered.  Under instructions from Europe's 
counter-piracy "Operation Atalanta," the Spanish navy destroyed the whaler and took its eight 
crew on a skiff toward the Somali coast, the ministry said in a statement.  European defense 
ministries agreed on Sunday to extend their counter-piracy mission in the area beyond 2010, 
Spain's Defense Ministry said in a separate note (Reuters).
.
      4.  INDIAN OCEAN:  French navy captures six men after pirate attack, 19 Apr 10.  French 
forces captured six suspected pirates in the Indian Ocean after a command and supply ship was 
attacked by gunmen in speedboats, the French military said on Wednesday.  Pirates in two skiffs 
attacked the (SOMME) overnight on Monday, some 300-km (190 miles) off the coast of 
Somalia. The French fired back and the speedboats fled.  No one was injured and after a brief 
search of the area, the Somme discovered the assailants' mother ship. "We found the suspected 
pirates, petrol and equipment that could be used for anything but fishing," said Colonel Patrick 
Steiger, a spokesman for the military.  It was the second time in six months that the "Somme" 
had come under attack while taking part in a European anti-piracy operation in the area 
(Reuters).
.
      5.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Turkish navy commandos capture pirates, 18 Apr 10.  Turkey's 
military says navy commandos aboard a frigate captured 13 pirates in the Indian Ocean.  The 
military says the commandos aboard Turkey's (TCG GELIBOLU) stopped the pirate vessel on 
Sunday as it sailed off the Seychelles on a route being used by a Turkish freighter heading to 
Mombassa, Kenya.  The commandos captured the pirates, destroyed their two skiffs and 
confiscated other pirate material.  The military says the pirates were photographed throwing 
weapons and ammunition overboard, but didn't say how close the pirates were to the freighter.  
The military did not say where the captured pirates would be taken (AP).
.
      6.  INDIAN OCEAN:  US Navy ship captures pirates in Gulf of Oman, 5 Apr 10.  The Navy 
guided-missile destroyer MCFAUL captured 10 pirates after an attack on a ship near Salalah, 
Oman.  The pirates pulled alongside the motor vessel RISING SUN on Tuesday and were firing 
small arms and rocket-propelled grenades, prompting the crew to send out a distress call, 
according to a news release from the U.S. Navy.  The RISING SUN’s crew increased its speed 
and used evasive maneuvers such as spraying the attackers with fire hoses, the release says.  The 
maneuvers worked and the pirates broke off their attack and returned to their mother ship, an 
Indian cargo dhow under their control.  The Oman Navy warship AL SHARQUIYAH arrived 
first on the scene, and as it approached the dhow, nine sailors who were being held hostage 
jumped into the water, the release says.  One of the sailors drowned, but the others were taken 
aboard the Omani Navy ship.  The MCFAUL arrived as the Omani crew was helping the sailors 
who escaped. The MCFAUL’s crew directed the pirates to surrender by putting their hands in the 
air and gathering on the bow of the seized dhow. As they complied, they could be seen throwing 
weapons overboard.  Two boarding teams from the MCFAUL took control of the dhow and 
detained the pirates, who were transferred to the U.S. destroyer CARNEY, where they will be 
held until they can be transferred for prosecution, the release says.  The surviving sailors who 
escaped their captors aboard the dhow were returned to the vessel, according to the U.S. Navy 
(LM: Virginian-Pilot).
.
      7.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Dutch sidestep EU red tape to rescue German ship, 5 Apr 10.  Gaining 
fast on the pirates who had seized a German freighter, Dutch naval captain Col. Hans Lodder had 
no time to waste on bureaucracy.  Sidestepping the command of the European Union's anti-
piracy task force, he went instead to his own government for authorization to recapture the ship 
by force.  Lodder first ascertained that the freighter's crew had locked themselves in a bulletproof 
room. Then he launched his ship's Lynx helicopter with a team of six special forces marines.  
With troops providing cover fire from the helicopter, the marines rappelled onto the ship's deck 
of the MV TAIPAN to shoot it out, if need be, with the pirates. But they met no resistance. The 
15-man crew was rescued, and 10 Somali pirates were captured.  "The pirates surrendered the 
moment they saw the marines," Lodder said in a telephone interview Tuesday from the Dutch 
frigate TROMP. No one was injured.  Monday's successful rescue showed that, when swift 
decisions are needed, it can be quicker to work around the European Union's command.  It was 
the first time a Dutch ship involved in the EU mission had used force to recapture a hijacked 
ship. An EU spokesman could not immediately recall any incident when troops under EU 
command had boarded a seized ship under the threat of fire.  Lodder said he decided to seek 
permission from his own command for an "opposed boarding" — one where pirates may resist 
— rather than act under procedures laid down by Brussels.  "We just told my force commander 
we would operate under national command until after the boarding," Lodder told The Associated 
Press. "We kept everyone in the EU informed of everything we did."  A spokesman for the EU 
mission acknowledged the Dutch action avoided a delay and was legitimate.  "For speed of 
reaction, if you're on the spot ... (and) dispatched at haste to react to something immediately, the 
best thing to do is to go under national command," said Cmdr. John Harbour, U.K.-based 
spokesman for the European Union Naval Force Somalia.  "If we were about to conduct an 
operation with a bit more time on our hands then we may well have gone through the standard 
EU process with a view to consulting," he added. "That consultation just takes a bit longer."  The 
TROMP may turn over the 10 captured Somalis on Monday to German or Dutch prosecutors for 
what would be a rare European piracy trial (AP).
.
      .
      
  E.  Source codes:  Information contained in this report is derived through direct reporting and 
analysis of reports of other agencies and commercial sources.  Source codes will be added to
new reports to enable users requiring more detail to make contact. Codes currently in use are:
.
      AFP, Agence France Presse
      AP, Associated Press
      BBC, BBC News
      BIMCO, Baltic and International Maritime Council, Denmark
      DHS, U. S. Department of Homeland Security
      DOJ, U. S. Department of Justice
      DOS, U.S. Department of State
      DOT, U. S. Department of Transportation
      FP, Fairplay, London
      IMB, International Maritime Bureau, London and Kuala Lumpur
      IMO, International Maritime Organization, London
      INFO, Informa Group, formerly LLP, Llp Limited, London
      LAT, Latitude38.com website
      LL, Lloyd's List, daily, London
      LM, local media
      MARAD, Maritime Administration, US
      MSC, Maritime Security Council, US
      MSCHOA, Maritime Security Centre – Horn of Africa http://www.mschoa.eu/
      NATO, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Brussels
      NGA, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Navigation 
          Safety System
      ONI, Office of Naval Intelligence analysis and comment
      Operator, owner or operator of affected vessel
      OSAC, Overseas Security Advisory Council
      USCG, United States Coast Guard
      RAN, Royal Australian Navy
      ReCAAP ISC, Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy
        and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia, Information Sharing Center   
        http://www.recaap.org 
      Reuters, Reuters Press
      Risk Intelligence/MaRisk, Maritime Security Risk Solutions
      RNZN, Royal New Zealand Navy
      SAP, Seafarers’ Assistance Program, Kenya
      STATE, U. S. Department of State
      TW, Tradewinds
      UKMTO, United Kingdom Maritime Trade Organization
      UPI, United Press International
.
2.  Designation of a high threat area is based on an assessment of all source information relating 
to the existence of, or potential for piracy and other crime, terrorism, civil unrest or low intensity 
conflict.  Every effort is made to ensure that incidents are not double-counted.  In the event 
double counting is detected or an event is later learned not to be as initially reported, an 
explanation of the cancellation of the inaccurate report will be made in at least one message prior 
to dropping the erroneous report.  Specific incidents will be reported for one month.
.
3.  This week's reporting:
.
  A.  Tanker fired upon 27 Apr 10, Lagos, Nigeria.
.
  B.  Tanker robbed 24 Apr 10, Boma, Democratic Republic of Congo.
.
  C.  Tanker reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, 
  Yemen.
.
  D.  Bulk carrier reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10, approximately 30NM northwest of 
  Mokha, Yemen.
.
  E.  Tanker fired upon 25 Apr 10, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.
.
  F.  Tanker (ISUZUGAWA) fired upon 25 Apr 10, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra 
  Island.
.
  G.  Tanker (PYXIS DELTA) fired upon 23 Apr 10, approximately 640NM northeast of Socotra 
  Island.
.
  H.  Chemical tanker reported attempted boarding 22 Apr 10, Eastern OPL anchorage, Malaysia.
.
  I.  Tug (PU 2402) robbed 27 Apr 10, approximately 70NM northeast of Kuantan, Malaysia.
.
  J.  Container ship robbed 28 Apr 10, Vung Tau anchorage, Vietnam.
.
  K.  Tanker robbed 21 Apr 10, Vung Tau anchorage, Vietnam.
.
4.  DETAILS:  There is reported active violence against shipping, a credible threat to shipping, 
or the potential to develop into a direct threat to the safety of shipping in the following areas:
.
  A.  NORTH AMERICA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  B.  CENTRAL AMERICA-CARIBBEAN:  No current incidents to report.
.
  C.  SOUTH AMERICA:  
.
      1.  VENEZUELA:  General cargo ship reported attempted boarding 8 Apr 10 at 1050 UTC 
while anchored in position 10:38N – 071:35W, inner anchorage, Maracaibo port.  Four robbers 
in two boats attempted to board the vessel at anchor.  The robbers aborted the attempt after the 
ship’s alarm was sounded.  Port authorities were informed (IMB).
.
      2.  PERU:  Chemical tanker boarded 9 Apr 10 at 1918 local time while in position 12:00S – 
077:12W, Callao.  A robber was seen climbing the anchor chain of the vessel.  The alarm was 
raised and the crew mustered.  The crew used water to force the robber to jump back into the 
water and escape.  Authorities were informed and a patrol boat was dispatched (IMB).
.
      3.  PERU:  Container ship robbed 05 Apr 10 at 2000 LT while at anchor in Callao anchorage. 
Four masked robbers armed with knives were seen on the forecastle of the ship. The general 
alarm was raised and the crew mustered on the bridge and all access to the accommodation was 
locked. Owner CSO contacted IMB PRC for assistance. IMB PRC contacted local authorities, 
but the thieves escaped with stolen ships stores (IMB).
.
      4.  PERU:  Tanker robbed 28 Mar 10 at 0118 UTC while moored in position 12:15.5S – 
076:55.8W, Conchan terminal.  Three robbers boarded the vessel from a small wooden boat.  
The alarm was raised and the crew proceeded to the forecastle to investigate.  The robbers 
jumped overboard and escaped with ship’s stores (IMB).
.
  D.  ATLANTIC OCEAN AREA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  E.  NORTHERN EUROPE-BALTIC:  No current incidents to report.
.
  F.  MEDITERRANEAN-BLACK SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  G.  WEST AFRICA:
.
      1.  CÔTE D’IVOIRE:  Chemical tanker robbed 3 Apr 10 at 0145 local time while anchored 
at Abidjan anchorage.  Robbers boarded the vessel unnoticed by the crew.  The duty officer 
spotted them and informed the captain.  Upon investigation it was discovered one robber armed 
with long knives lowering ship’s stores into the sea.  The robber jumped into the water and a 
small boat was seen recovering the rope.  The vessel weighed anchor and proceeded to open seas 
(IMB).
.
      2.  NIGERIA:  Tanker fired upon 27 Apr 10 at 2145 local time while in position 06:10.1N – 
003:20.92E, Lagos.  An officer on the vessel noticed on radar a boat approaching from the port 
bow.  When lights were directed at the boat, the boat stopped and turned towards another vessel.  
Later, the boat approached the tanker from astern.  The men in the boat opened fire at the vessel 
and attempted to board but failed due to razor wire around the deck and the vessel’s constant 
maneuvering.  All vessels in the vicinity were informed via VHF.  No injuries to the crew were 
reported (IMB).
.
      3.  NIGERIA:  Container ship reported attempted boarding 12 Apr 10 at 1215 UTC while 
drifting in position 06:16.6N – 003:26.9E, Lagos roads.  Three men armed with automatic rifles 
in a fiberglass motor boat approached the vessel with intent to board.  The duty officer raised the 
alarm and conducted evasive maneuvers.  The armed men aborted the attempt due to the 
alertness of the crew.  Port authority and ships in the vicinity were informed (IMB).
.
      4.  DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO:  Tanker robbed 24 Apr 10 while anchored at 
Boma.  Robbers boarded the vessel and stole ship’s properties before escaping unnoticed.  No 
further details to provide (IMB).
.
  H.  INDIAN OCEAN-EAST AFRICA:
.
      1.  RED SEA:  Tanker reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0523 UTC while underway 
in position 13:48N – 043:00E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  Two skiffs 
were sighted at a distance of 1NM from the vessel.  One skiff approached the vessel at a high 
speed, with four armed men and a hook ladder visible.  Armed security personnel onboard fired 
several warning shots at the skiff forcing the armed men to abandon the pursuit (IMB).
.
      2.  RED SEA:  Bulk carrier reported suspicious approach 25 Apr 10 at 0515 UTC while 
underway in position 13:46.2N – 042:57.7E, approximately 30NM northwest of Mokha, Yemen.  
Vessel reported being chased by two high speed wooden boats with approximately six persons in 
each.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers.  After approximately 80 
minutes, the boats moved away (Operator, IMB).
.
      3.  GULF OF ADEN:  General cargo ship (THOR TRAVELLER) fired upon 14 Apr 10 at 
2345 UTC while underway in position 12:42N – 047:23E, approximately 125NM northwest of 
Bosasso, Somalia.  Approximately seven men armed with RPGs and guns in a skiff chased and 
opened fire on the vessel underway.  The captain conducted evasive maneuvers and contacted 
nearby warships for assistance, who later intercepted the skiff.  The vessel sustained damages 
from gunfire (IMB, CMF).
.
      4.  GULF OF ADEN:  Amphibious dock landing ship (USS ASHLAND) fired upon 10 Apr 
10 while underway approximately 240NM east of Aden, Yemen.  Suspected pirates opened fire 
on the US warship, causing the ship to respond by returning fire, destroying the skiff.  All six 
suspects were rescued and detained onboard the ASHLAND. No damage to the ASHLAND was 
reported (AP, Mercury chat).
.
      5.  GULF OF ADEN:  Chemical tanker reported suspicious approach 4 Apr 10 at 0545 UTC 
while underway in position 13:58.8N – 051:25E, approximately 135NM southeast of Al 
Mukalla, Yemen.  Vessel reported being chased by three white skiffs and one mother ship.  The 
captain conducted evasive maneuvers and reported no further incidents (IMB).
.
      6.  GULF OF ADEN:  Vehicle carrier reported suspicious approach 6 Apr 10 at 0840 UTC 
while underway in position 14:06.8N – 051:51.8E, approximately 160NM southeast of Al 
Mukalla, Yemen. Armed men in skiffs began initial approaches to the vessel, but never got 
within boarding range as the vessel master employed counter-piracy measures and the skiffs 
aborted the chase (IMB).  
.
      7.  GULF OF ADEN:  Tanker (TORM RAGNHILD) fired upon 3 Apr 10 at 0539 UTC while 
underway in position 13:51.7N – 051:05.1E, approximately 120NM southeast of Al Mukalla, 
Yemen.  Men armed with RPGs and automatic weapons chased and opened fire on the vessel.  
The vessel enforced counter-piracy measures, conducted evasive maneuvers, and sent out a 
distress call.  The IMB PRC relayed the request to authorities.  A military aircraft arrived on 
location and circled the tanker, forcing the attackers to abort the attempt (IMB, AFP).
.
      8.  GULF OF ADEN:  General cargo ship (ICEBERG I) hijacked 29 Mar 10 at 0930 local 
time while underway in position 13:15N – 046:40E, approximately 10NM off the Yemeni coast.  
Armed pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel, taking hostage the 24 crewmembers onboard 
(IMB, Reuters).
.
      9.  GULF OF ADEN:  Tanker (VALLE DI CASTIGLIA) fired upon 28 Mar 10 at 1524 UTC 
while underway in position 13:08N – 048:45E, approximately 80NM southwest of Al Mukalla, 
Yemen.  Four men in a skiff armed with machine guns chased and fired upon the vessel.  The 
alarm was raised, SSAS alert sent out and coalition forces were contacted.  A warship advised it 
would arrive at location within 40 minutes.  The vessel increased speed, adopted evasive 
maneuvers, and escaped the boarding attempt (IMB, Intermanager.org).
.
      10.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0348 UTC while underway in 
position 17:59N – 065:49E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  Six men armed 
with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The 
vessel contacted coalition forces, increased speed, and conducted evasive maneuvers.  The men 
attempted to board the vessel several times before finally aborting the attack.  No injuries to the 
crew were reported (IMB).
.
      11.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (ISUZUGAWA) fired upon 25 Apr 10 at 0215 UTC while 
underway in position 18:06N – 065:47E, approximately 815NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Four men armed with automatic weapons and RPGs in a white skiff chased and opened fire on 
the vessel.  The vessel raised the alarm, sent out a distress call, increased speed and conducted 
evasive maneuvers, while the crew locked all accommodation doors.  The armed men tried to 
board the vessel using a steel ladder and hooks attached to ropes.  They fired an RPG at the 
accommodation and the ship continued with evasive maneuvering.  After several attempts, the 
men aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew were reported (IMB, MSCHOA).
.
      12.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (PYXIS DELTA) fired upon 23 Apr 10 at 0215 UTC while 
underway in position 18:06N – 065:47E, approximately 640NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Five armed men in a skiff chased and opened fire on the vessel with RPGs and automatic 
weapons.  The master conducted evasive maneuvers and contacted coalition forces for 
assistance.  The vessel raised their alarm and increased speed.  The armed men chased the vessel 
for more than an hour and aborted the attack.  No injuries to the crew or damage to the vessel 
was reported (IMB, Tradewinds).
.
      13.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier fired upon 21 Apr 10 at 1050 UTC while underway in 
position 01:10.05N – 065:00.08E, approximately 665NM northeast of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  
Four men in a blue skiff armed with RPGs and automatic weapons opened fire on the vessel for 
approximately three minutes.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers, 
forcing the attackers to abandon the attempt (IMB, Operator).
.
      14.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (VOC DAISY) hijacked 21 Apr 10 at 0605 UTC while 
underway in position 16:25N – 057:13E, approximately 280NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Suspected pirates in skiffs boarded and hijacked the vessel, taking 21 crewmembers hostage (AP, 
IMB).
.
      15.  INDIAN OCEAN:  French warship (FS SOMME) fired upon 19 Apr 10 at 2101 UTC 
while underway approximately 400NM southeast of Mogadishu, Somalia.  Two skiffs opened 
fire on the ship, causing the SOMME to return fire with warning shots.  When the skiffs 
attempted to flee, the SOMME pursued the skiffs and was able to capture one, detaining four 
suspected pirates (Reuters, MSCHOA).
.
      16.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker fired upon 18 Apr 10 at 0725 UTC while underway in 
position 09:29N – 068:56E, approximately 865NM southeast of Socotra Island and 430NM west 
of Kochi, India.  Four men in a skiff armed with RPGs opened fire on the vessel.  Counter-piracy 
measures were enforced and an embarked security team fired warning shots at the skiff, forcing 
them to abort the attack.  No casualties to the crew or ship were reported (IMB, Operator).
.
      17.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessels (PRANTALAY 11) (PRANTALAY 12) 
(PRANTALAY 14) hijacked 18 Apr 10 at 0200 UTC while underway in position 09:29N – 
069:18E, approximately 230NM northwest of Minicoy Island, India.  Armed men in skiffs 
opened fire on the three fishing vessels and ordered them to stop.  They boarded and hijacked the 
vessels to possibly use as motherships.  The three Thai vessels have 77 total crewmembers 
onboard (AP, IMB, Operator).
.
      18.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship reported suspicious approach 11 Apr 10 at 0930 UTC 
while underway in position 02:26.9N – 059:59.8E, approximately 500NM northeast of Port 
Victoria, Seychelles.  Three speed boats were detected on radar at a distance of about 3NM.  
Two skiffs with speeds of 20 knots commenced chasing the ship.  The ship alarm was raised, 
speed was increased, and evasive maneuvers were conducted.  The skiffs closed to 1.6NM and 
aborted the pursuit (IMB).
.
      19.  INDIAN OCEAN:  General cargo ship (RAK AFRIKANA) hijacked 11 Apr 10 at 0741 
UTC while underway in position 04:45S – 051:00E, approximately 565NM southeast of 
Kismayo, Somalia.  Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel and have sailed it to an undisclosed 
location off Somalia (IMB, AP).
.
      20.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (NADA) fired upon 9 Apr 10 at 1005 UTC while 
underway in position 13:38N – 056:08E, approximately 115NM northeast of Socotra Island.  
Armed men in skiffs chased and fired upon the vessel using machine guns and RPGs.  The vessel 
increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers (IMB, LM: Xinhua).
.
      21.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship fired upon 8 Apr 10 at 0622 UTC while underway in 
position 13:43N – 056:41E, approximately 150NM northeast of Socotra Island.  Armed men in 
skiffs chased and opened fire on the vessel.  The vessel increased speed, conducted evasive 
maneuvers and avoided the attack (IMB).
.
      22.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship fired upon 8 Apr 10 at 0622 UTC while underway in 
position 13:34.5N – 057:26.7E, approximately 185NM northeast of Socotra Island.  The captain 
initially reported a suspicious approach by one skiff with three persons onboard at 0430.  The 
skiff continued to pursue and then opened fire on the vessel at 0622.  Vessel increased speed to 
22 knots and activated fire hoses before the skiff finally abandoned the attack (Mercury chat, 
IMB).
.
      23.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Bulk carrier (YASIN C) hijacked 7 Apr 10 at 1243 UTC while 
underway in position 04:59S – 043:52E, approximately 260NM east of Mombasa, Kenya.  
Pirates boarded and hijacked the vessel with its 25 crewmembers and have sailed it to an 
undisclosed location (IMB, MSCHOA).
.
      24.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (HAMBURG BRIDGE) fired upon 5 Apr 10 at 1205 
UTC while underway in position 13:38.2N – 055:38.2E, approximately 90NM northeast of 
Socotra Island.  Armed men in skiffs chased and fired upon the vessel, using automatic weapons 
and RPGs.  The vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers to escape (IMB, 
MSCHOA).
.
      25.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (TAIPAN) boarded 5 Apr 10 at 0749 UTC while 
underway in position 12:23N – 060:21E, approximately 340NM east of Socotra Island.  Armed 
men in two skiffs boarded the vessel underway.  The crew locked themselves in a bulletproof 
safe room and contacted authorities for assistance.  The Dutch frigate TROMP arrived on scene 
and dispatched a helicopter to board the vessel.  The marines rescued the crew and detained the 
attackers. No one was injured (IMB, AP).
.
      26.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Chemical tanker (RISING SUN) reported attempted boarding 5 Apr 
10 at 0313 UTC while underway in position 18:21N – 059:01E, approximately 110NM south of 
Masirah Island, Oman.  The master reported being chased by three skiffs. A distress message 
was sent requesting help.  Two skiffs came close to the tanker and the men placed a ladder on the 
vessel’s side to board.  Due to evasive maneuvers conducted by the crew, the men failed to board 
the vessel.  A warship arrived in the vicinity to provide assistance.  No injury to the crew was 
reported but the vessel sustained RPG damage (IMB, LM: Virginian-Pilot).
.
      27.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship fired upon 4 Apr 10 at 1340 UTC while underway in 
position 09:24.3S – 044:30.2E, approximately 340NM southeast of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.  
Men in a skiff armed with RPGs and automatic weapons chased and fired upon the vessel.  The 
vessel increased speed and conducted evasive maneuvers to evade the attack (IMB).
.
      28.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (SAMHO DREAM) hijacked 4 Apr 10 at 0740 UTC while 
underway in position 08:21N – 065:00E, approximately 900NM east of Eyl, Somalia.  Pirates in 
skiffs boarded and hijacked the vessel.  The vessel and 24 crewmembers have been taken to an 
undisclosed location off Somalia (IMB, AP).
.
      29.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (WESTERMOOR) fired upon 2 Apr 10 at 1100 UTC 
while underway in position 11:06S – 046:07E, approximately 160NM northeast of Comoros.  
Two skiffs with armed men onboard chased and opened fire with RPGs and automatic weapons.  
Vessel conducted evasive maneuvers and successfully escaped (IMB, EUNAVFOR).
. 
      30.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship (ITAL GARLAND) fired upon 2 Apr 10 at 0834 
UTC while underway in position 12:50.6N – 058:10E, approximately 210NM east of Socotra 
Island.  Two wooden boats with seven armed men onboard chased and opened fire on the vessel.  
The master increased speed to maximum and carried out evasive maneuvers.  After 30 minutes 
of pursuit, the two boats aborted the attack and moved away (IMB, EUNAVFOR).
.
      31.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Container ship reported suspicious approach 31 Mar 10 at 1830 UTC 
while underway in position 14:25N – 064:40E, approximately 600NM northeast of Socotra 
Island.  The vessel reported two skiffs approaching the vessel.  The captain raised the alarm and 
conducted evasive maneuvers before the suspicious skiffs moved away (Operator, IMB).
.
      32.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Frigate (USS NICHOLAS) fired upon 31 Mar 10 approximately 
150NM northwest of Port Victoria, Seychelles.  Three skiffs fired upon the warship.  The 
NICHOLAS returned fire, sinking one skiff and detaining three pirates (Reuters).
.
      33.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Vessel (DELMAS NACALA) fired upon 31 Mar 10 at 1713 UTC 
while underway in position 01:28N – 065:09E, approximately 680NM northeast of Port Victoria, 
Seychelles.  The vessel reported being chased and fired upon by two small fast boats while 
traveling at a speed of 18 knots.  Vessel conducted evasive maneuvers and managed to prevent 
further pursuit (IMB, MSCHOA, Mercury chat).
.
      34.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessel fired upon 31 Mar 10 at 1700 UTC while underway in 
position 10:32N – 058:00E, approximately 235NM southeast of Socotra Island.  Vessel reported 
being fired upon while transiting at a speed of 10 knots.  One crewmember was reportedly shot 
in the leg during the attack (IMB).
.
      35.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (DL COSMOS) fired upon 31 Mar 10 at 1320 UTC while 
underway in position 05:24S – 040:05E, approximately 60NM southeast of Mombasa, Kenya.  
Captain reported being fired upon by two skiffs from the stern.  Vessel was moving at 
approximately 14 knots when the attack occurred.  The captain increased speed and was able to 
separate from the skiffs. No casualties were reported (Mercury Chat, Tradewinds).
.
      36.  INDIAN OCEAN:  General cargo ship (CHOL SAN BONG CHONG NYON HO) fired 
upon 31 Mar 10 at 0610 UTC while underway in position 02:15S – 041:31E, approximately 
150NM northeast of Mombasa, Kenya.  Armed men opened fire on the vessel with automatic 
weapons and RPGs, resulting in severe injuries for nine crewmembers.  Kenyan Coast Guard 
responded to the distress call to provide assistance (IMB, MSCHOA).
.
      37.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (EVITA) fired upon 31 Mar 10 at 0513 UTC while underway 
in position 02:03N – 052:27E, approximately 425NM east of Mogadishu, Somalia.  Vessel 
reported coming under fire by two skiffs.  Vessel conducted evasive maneuvers and evaded the 
attack.  No injuries were reported (UKMTO, MSCHOA).
.
      38.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Fishing vessel reportedly hijacked 30 Mar 10 while underway in last 
reported position 10:08N – 056:06E, approximately 165NM southeast of Socotra Island.  Owners 
reported losing contact with the vessel on 30 March after no longer receiving daily updates from 
the captain.  Vessel is assessed as hijacked and possibly being used as a mothership to conduct 
pirate attacks.  No further information to provide at this time (IMB, Mercury chat).
.
      39.  INDIAN OCEAN:  Tanker (SAVEH) fired upon 28 Mar 10 at 0815 UTC while 
underway in position 01:01.1S – 057:14.4E, approximately 245NM northeast of Port Victoria, 
Seychelles.  Two skiffs with 2-3 armed men in each, chased and fired upon the vessel with 
machine guns and RPGs.  The armed men continued the attack for over two hours before 
eventually moving away.  No injuries to the crew but the vessel sustained minor damage (IMB, 
EUNAVFOR).
.
      40.  BANGLADESH:  Container ship robbed 7 Apr 10 at 0400 local time while berthed in 
position 22:14.3N – 091:49.6E, Chittagong port.  Shore watchman onboard spotted three robbers 
armed with long knives on the poop deck.  The robbers stole ship’s stores and jumped overboard 
and escaped.  Attempts to contact authorities were unsuccessful (IMB).
.
  I.  RED SEA:  No current incidents to report.
.
  J.  PERSIAN GULF:  No current incidents to report.
.
  K.  SOUTHEAST ASIA:
.
      1.  MALAYSIA:  Chemical tanker reported attempted boarding 22 Apr 10 at 0300 local time 
while anchored in position 01:19.8N – 104:16.1E, Eastern OPL anchorage.  Three robbers in a 
boat attempted to board the vessel. The duty watchman on deck spotted the robbers and raised 
the alarm, forcing them to abort the attempt.  No casualties were reported (IMB).
.
      2.  MALAYSIA:  Tanker (SEMUA GEMBIRA) robbed 17 Apr 10 at 0600 local time while 
anchored in position 01:18.42N – 104:12.7E, approximately 1NM south of Tanjung Ayam.  Six 
robbers armed with swords and parangs boarded the vessel via the poop deck.  They tied up the 
greaser in the engine room and stole ship’s engine parts. The watch officer spotted them and 
raised the alarm to muster the crew, but the robbers managed to escape (ReCAAP, IMB).
.
      3.  STRAIT OF MALACCA:  Tanker reported suspicious approach 17 Apr 10 at 1055 local 
time while underway in position 04:02.3N – 099:45E, approximately 55NM northwest of Lumut, 
Malaysia.  One fishing boat with a few persons onboard approached the tanker while drifting.  
The master suspected persons intended to board the vessel and sounded the alarm.  The vessel 
conducted counter-piracy measures and activated fire hoses.  The boat stayed close to the vessel 
for sometime before eventually moving away (IMB).
.
      4.  INDONESIA:  General cargo ship robbed 20 Apr 10 at 0345 local time while anchored at 
Tanjung Priok.  Four robbers armed with long knives boarded the vessel.  The duty watch 
noticed one robber coming out from the port side entrance and immediately informed the officer 
on watch who raised the alarm.  The robbers escaped with stolen ship’s equipment (IMB).
.
      5.  INDONESIA:  General cargo ship reported attempted boarding 10 Apr 10 at 2236 local 
time while anchored at Pemancingan anchorage.  A robber attempted to climb up the anchor 
chain.  The crew spotted him and informed the bridge.  The alarm was raised and ship’s whistle 
was sounded.  The robber jumped into the water and escaped (IMB).
.
      6.  INDONESIA:  Tanker robbed 10 Apr 10 at 0515 local time while anchored in position 
01:28.6S – 116:48.9E, Lawi anchorage, Balikpapan.  Robbers boarded the vessel by breaking 
open the hawse pipe cover.  They entered the forecastle and stole ship’s equipment by breaking 
the lock on the booby hatch (IMB).
.
      7.  INDONESIA:  Chemical tanker reported attempted boarding 30 Mar 10 at 0030 local time 
while berthed in Dumai port.  Seven robbers using a rope, attempted to climb aboard the vessel.  
The duty watch spotted them and informed the duty officer.  Upon being spotted, the robbers 
retreated back into their boat and escaped (IMB).
.
      8.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug (PU 2402) robbed 27 Apr 10 at 2138 local time while 
underway in position 04:44.16N – 103:58E, approximately 70NM northeast of Kuantan, 
Malaysia.  Seven robbers in a small boat came along the port side of the vessel.  Six of the 
robbers boarded the vessel while one of them armed with a parang waited in the boat.  The ship 
master managed to activate the vessel’s SSAS, but was disabled by one of the robbers.  All nine 
crew was led to the master’s cabin with their hands tied.  The robbers threatened the crew with 
machetes, demanding they hand over their cash and valuables.  The incident lasted 
approximately 30 minutes.  The robbers left the tug taking with them cash, a laptop, and the 
crew’s mobile phones.  The incident was reported to Singapore’s Port Operation and Control 
Centre (ReCAAP).
.
      9.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Tug (PU 2007), towing barge (PU 3316) reportedly hijacked 19 
Apr 10 at 2328 local time while underway in position 04:25.51N – 104:18.92E, approximately 
57NM northeast of Kuantan, Malaysia.  The tug activated its SSAS while underway at the above 
position and subsequently every 30 minutes after that.  Suspected that it had been hijacked, the 
owners reported the incident.  It is assessed that the tug and barge had deviated from its planned 
course and heading easterly.  The last assessed position of the tug is approximately 91NM east 
northeast of Kuantan, heading easterly at almost 4 knots towards the Philippines.  On 20 Apr 10 
at 1525 local time, the barge was spotted at position 04:29.9N – 104:56.8E, approximately 
105NM east northeast of Kuantan (ReCAAP).
.
      10.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Bulk carrier (STAR YPSILON) robbed 9 Apr 10 at 0200 local 
time while underway in position 03:19.1N – 105:28.9E, approximately 20NM northwest of 
Pulau Jemaja, Indonesia.  Seven men armed with guns and long knives boarded the vessel and 
stole the ship’s cash box and two mobile phones.  The alarm was raised and authorities were 
informed.  No crewmembers were injured.  ReCAAP ISC Comment:  The STAR YPSILON 
and THERESA LIBRA incidents were likely involving the same group of men as the modus 
operandi was similar.  Both incidents occurred during hours of darkness while the ships were 
underway, mostly along the north-easterly recommended route in the South China Sea 
(ReCAAP).
.
      11.  SOUTH CHINA SEA:  Chemical tanker (THERESA LIBRA) robbed 7 Apr 10 at 2300 
local time while underway in position 02:44.2N – 105:16.3E, approximately 6NM west of Pulau 
Damar, Indonesia.  While underway at approximately 12 knots, eight men armed with knives 
boarded the vessel from a boat.  They took the engineer hostage and entered the accommodation 
area.  Upon reaching the bridge, they threatened the crew with knives and took the captain 
hostage.  They proceeded to raid the cabin of the captain and officers, taking cash and valuables.  
After approximately 20 minutes, the robbers escaped in their boat, which was alongside the poop 
deck.  The men were casually dressed, spoke English with a local accent and were aggressive 
throughout the incident.  No crewmembers were injured (ReCAAP).
.
      12.  VIETNAM:  Container ship robbed 28 Apr 10 at 1848 UTC while anchored at Vung 
Tau.  Two robbers boarded the vessel at anchor.  The duty watchman spotted the robbers and 
immediately raised the alarm.  The robbers managed to escape with ship’s stores.  Port authority 
was informed (IMB).
.
      13.  VIETNAM:  Tanker robbed 21 Apr 10 at 0308 local time while anchored in position 
10:13.7N – 107:05E, Vung Tau.  Armed men boarded the tanker.  The duty watchman from the 
bridge spotted the robbers and raised the ship’s alarm.  The robbers escaped with ship’s stores.  
Port authority was informed (IMB).
.
      14.  VIETNAM:  Chemical tanker robbed 3 Apr 10 at 0230 local time while berthed in 
position 10:38N – 106:46E, Hiep Phouc.  Three robbers armed with knives boarded the vessel 
and took the 2nd officer as hostage.  They stole ship’s properties then escaped.  The hostage 
crewmember was injured and sent to shore for medical treatment (IMB).
.
      15.  PHILIPPINES:  Chemical tanker reported suspicious approach 4 Apr 10 at 0215 UTC 
while underway in position 04:10.3N – 120:41.3E, south of Tawi Tawi, Celebes Sea.  Vessel 
reported being chased by skiffs for 30 minutes.  Evasive maneuvers were conducted and the 
vessel continued its transit (IMB).
.
  L.  NORTH ASIA: No current incidents to report.
.
  M.  PACIFIC-ANTARCTIC OCEAN:  No current incidents to report.
.
  N.  ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC NON-STATE ACTIVIST GROUPS:  No current 
incidents to report.
.
5.  Originator of this WWTTS report requests consumer feedback. Originator will incorporate all 
anti-shipping events and violence against the maritime industry into this weekly message where
appropriate.  The Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) can be contacted via message traffic at ONI 
WASHINGTON DC//11// or, the ONI violence at sea (VAS) desk may be contacted at comm. 
Phone (301) 669-4784 or via e-mail at amoulder@nmic.navy.mil.//