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Piracy – NATO Shipping Center Weekly Assessment

25 February 2011 Gulf of Aden/Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC)No attacks were reported over the past week in the GoA. However, skiffs blending in withthe local traffic to conduct piracy can be expected at any time with little or no warning. The main piracy threat remains in the central and eastern part of the GoA/IRTC. Overall, reports of attacks remain below 2010 and 2009 levels.Arabian Sea/Greater Somali BasinExcept for the far southeast of the Indian Ocean, weather is not affecting the greater Somali Basin and Arabian Sea. During the past week (19 -25 February) piracy activities were concentrated in the southern Arabian Sea between 10 to 15 Degrees North and 58 to 64 Degrees East. One yacht has been pirated and several merchants been attacked or approached in that area. Numerous calls of suspicious sightings close to the Omani coast indicate another focused area for pirates operating area. Pirates are using dhow mother ships to launch their attack skiffs against any targets of opportunity. A significant number of pirated regional dhows, particularly Iranian flagged Jelbut-type and Yemeni flagged Yemeni-type vessels are currently in pirate possession and regularly being taken out on mother ship operations.We currently assess that at least five ...

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Pirates hit tanker off southern Malaysia

Pirates stole two computers and some engine spare parts A Liberian-registered tanker was robbed by pirates while anchored off southern Malaysia early on Sunday morning.The tanker, Simon, was anchored 2.1nm south-southwest of Pulau Mungging, Malaysia when it was boarded by five pirates armed with machetes and handguns at 04-35hrs on Sunday morning. According to the ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre the pirates stole two computers and some engine spare parts from the engine room, before escaping in a speed boat. None of the crew was injured in the attack. It is the second attack on a tanker in the area this month.Source: Seatrade Asia

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Pirates to pay part of ransom money to terrorist organization

Relationship between pirates and Al-Shabaab GAC Protective Solutions says a maritime security alert has been issued for Somalia following a development in the relationship between pirate syndicates and radical Islamist organization al-Shabaab.The U.S. has designated al-Shabaab as a Foreign Terrorist Organization under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under Section 1(b) of Executive Order 13224 (as amended).Pirates in the harbor town of Xaraardheere have agreed to pay 20 percent of their ransom money to al-Shabaab in exchange for being allowed to use the town as a base for their activity, says GAC Protective Solutions.This cooperative relationship may not last, given that the two groups are ideologically opposed to one another. Furthermore, the agreement only came about after pirate syndicate leaders were captured by al-Shabaab, which indicates that it was not based on a particularly solid foundation and may not last for very long. The monetary relationship between the two sides is not likely to last.The town has previously been contested by groups such as Hizb ul-Islam and pirates will still be able to operate further north if they are forced to leave the area.Source: Marinelog

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Fishing Vessel ALFARDOUS believed pirated in the Gulf of Aden

Crew of 8 people On the 13 February, the Yemeni Fishing Vessel ALFARDOUS was believed to have been pirated close to Socotra Island in the Gulf of Aden.The vessel has a reported crew of 8, nationalities presently not known. There is no further information on the condition of the crew.EUNAVFOR is monitoring the situation.There are now at least 31 vessels and 694 hostages being held by pirates off the coast of Somalia. A list of FV ALFARDOUS and other pirated vessels can be found here.Source: EU NAVFOR

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IMO – January 2011 report on acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships

Incedents of piracy and armed robbery The IMO has issued its monthly report MSC.4/Circ.167 dated 7 February 2011 giving all incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships reported to the IMO between 31 December 2010 and 31 January 2011.The report makes a distinction between acts of piracy, and acts of armed robbery against ships, and attempted attacks.Source : IMO

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South Africa joins pirate battle

SA deployed a frigate South Africa has deployed a frigate to the Mozambique Channel off east Africa to help fight the southward creep of piracy, the public broadcaster SABC reported.The deployment marks the first time South Africa has sent a ship to take part in anti-piracy operations, and follows international pressure on the key regional player to step up its role in the fight against piracy.The ship, the SAS Mendi, will join five other frigates and 18 smaller boats in the operation, SABC said.Somali pirates have been striking farther afield as the European Union and other countries have cracked down on piracy off the coast of Somalia.In December, pirates staged their southernmost attacks yet when they tried unsuccessfully to hijack two ships in the Mozambique Channel. According to the International Maritime Bureau, Somali pirates are currently holding 31 vessels and 700 hostages.Source: AFP

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IMB Weekly Piracy Report

14 February 2011 12.02.2011: 1218 UTC: Posn: 20:15.43N - 064:16.09E, around 280nm SE from Ras al Had, Oman, (Off Somalia) Pirates have hijacked a bulk carrier underway. The owners received a distress alert from the ship and informed the coalition forces. A coalition aircraft was sent to the location, which noticed two suspected pirate skiffs on board the ship. There has been no communication with the ship. 10.02.2011: 1440 UTC: Posn: 13:09.6N - 043:06.5E, Bab el Mandeb, Red SeaFour skiffs chased a bulk carrier underway. D/O altered course and alerted the armed security team on board who made themselves seen. Warship contacted for assistance. The skiffs came close to 0.3 nm and the duty lookout saw 4-6 pirates in each skiff armed with guns. The pirates observed the ship with binoculars and aborted the attempted attack upon noticing the armed security guards. 10.02.2011: 0045 LT: Posn: 05:31.9N - 003:38Ee, around 50nm off Lagos, Nigeria Seven to eight armed robbers in a fishing boat approached a drifting chemical tanker from astern. The duty officer noticed the suspicious movement of the boat and informed master. Master raised alarm, activated SSAS alert, increase speed and took evasive manoeuvres. Robbers open fire while attempted ...

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MV SININ believed pirated in the Arabian Sea

The vessel has a crew of 23 On the afternoon of 12 February, the MV SININ is believed to have been pirated approximately 350 nautical miles East of Masirah (Oman) in the North Arabian Sea.The vessel, which has a crew of 23 (13 Iranian and 10 Indian nationals), sent out a distress signal, saying she was under attack, late afternoon on Saturday to which an aircraft from the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) immediately responded. The aircraft photographed 2 suspected pirate skiffs on board the vessel. There has been no communication with the ship since the distress signal was sent and the MV SININ has now changed course towards the Somali coast. There is no information on the condition of the crew.The MV SININ is a Maltese flagged and owned Bulk Carrier. She has a deadweight of 52,466 tonnes and was on route to Singapore from Fujairah (UAE) when she was attacked. The ship was not registered with MSC(HOA) and was not reporting to UKMTO. EUNAVFOR is monitoring the situation.Source: EU NAVFOR

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