Action on the issue of maritime piracy
The ICC International Maritime Bureau (IMB) has come out in support of a joint campaign launched by the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), Intertanko, Intercargo, BIMCO and the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) that urges governments to take firm action on the issue of maritime piracy off the coast of Somalia.
The campaign, aimed at raising awareness of the human and economic costs of maritime piracy, urges governments around the world to prioritise six key actions:
Reducing the effectiveness of easily identifiable motherships;
Authorizing naval forces to hold pirates and deliver them for prosecution and punishment;
Fully criminalizing all acts of piracy and intent to commit piracy under national laws, in accordance with their mandatory duty to co-operate to suppress piracy under international conventions;
Increasing naval assets available in the affected areas;
Providing greater protection and support for seafarers; and
Tracing and criminalizing the organisers and financiers behind the criminal networks.
So far in 2011, 13 vessels have been hijacked by suspected Somali pirates, with a total of 243 crewmembers taken hostage.
In addition, six crew were kidnapped from a vessel that was hijacked and then left adrift in the Indian Ocean. Of most concern, however, are the seven murders committed by Somali pirates- three of which were crew on board the hijacked Beluga Nomination.
Source: Manilla Bulletin