Thursday, April 21, 2011

Two Ships Hijacked Today

As Reported HERE

Piracy REPORT:Piracy
Breaking News
Two Ships Attacked, Believed Hijacked
Italian and South Korean Vessels Targeted by Somali Pirates
By ANDREW MWANGURA Posted 1 hr. 5 min. ago
The South Korean-owned Hanjin Tianjin and Italian-owned Rosalia D'Amato have been attacked by Somali pirates, with both ships believed to have been successfully hijacked, officials and maritime sources said Thursday. The news of the attacks came as the European Union's anti-piracy force said it had on Thursday morning been forced to release 18 suspected pirates after attempts to prosecute them failed.
Seoul-based Hanjin Shipping said its container vessel, with 14 South Koreans and six Indonesians on board, was attacked in the Indian Ocean, 460 nautical miles east of the Somali coast, on Wednesday evening. Contact with the ship, which last called into port in Gibraltar and was heading for Singapore, was lost. Maritime sources told Somalia Report the vessel was believed to now be in the hands of a pirate group.
The South Korean warship Choi Young was reportedly en-route to the vessel's last-known position – a move which could spell bad news for the pirates. On January 21, forces from the Choi Young killed eight pirates and rescued 21 crew members from a South Korean chemical tanker a mere six days after it was taken.
The Rosalia D'Amato, on its way to Iran from Brazil, was taken in the Arabian sea off the coast of Oman on Wednesday night, maritime sources said. According to Italian media, the vessel has a crew of 22, including six Italians.
Meanwhile, EU NAVFOR said the Finnish warship FNS POHJANMAA returned 18 suspected pirates to Somalia after requests to several states believed to have an interest in conducting a prosecution were unsuccessful. The suspects were captured on April 5 after allegedly attempting to seize the Singapore-flagged MV Pacific Opal.
Despite the presence of dozens of international warships off the coast of Somalia, piracy has continued to blossom, and the last few weeks has seen frenetic activity. According to the International Maritime Bureau, there were 97 attacks off Somalia in the first three months of 2010, more than double last year's figure over the same period. Some fifteen vessels were successfully seized. Since then, at least another three ships have been taken – including the above attacks – and three ships have been released for an estimated total of $23.5 million in ransom money.
The developments come two days after a counter-piracy conference in Dubai, where governments and private business pledged $4.5 million to strengthen prosecutions, jails and coastguard capability in Somalia and regional states.


No comments:

Post a Comment