On January 31st, Sea Shepherd vessel the ‘M/V Farley Mowat’ was attacked by more than 50 assailants posing as fishermen on board 20 high speed boats while performing maritime conservation patrols inside the Vaquita Refuge in the Upper Gulf of California. A total of 52 skiffs were counted. The poachers threw molotov cocktails and projectiles, including lead weights and large stones, smashing windows and setting the side of the Sea Shepherd ship on fire.
Sea Shepherd Vessel M/V Farley Mowat was attacked while it was conducting maritime patrols inside the Vaquita Refuge in the Upper Gulf of California, and had recovered three illegal gillnets, when the crew noticed approximately 35 skiffs operating inside the refuge. The Sea Shepherd vessel headed towards the skiffs to observe fishing methods being employed, as all gillnet fishing is strictly prohibited inside the marine protected area.
The Seychellois Attorney General informed on 18 December, that the six Somali nationals apprehended by the crew of EU NAVFOR flagship ‘ITS Virginio Fasan’ have been charged with ‘committing an act of piracy’ and ‘attempting an act of piracy’ in the Indian Ocean.
Six suspected pirates on a motor whaler, acting as mother ship, and a skiff have been detained following attacks on a 52,000 tonne container ship and a fishing vessel, during a a 24 hour operation by EUNAVFOR, on 17-18 November, in the Southern Somali Basin.
On 16 May, an Indian anti-piracy patrol received a distress call from a Liberian-registered bulk carrier that reported an incident of attempted piracy by two suspicious mother vessels along with 7-8 skiffs, in Gulf of Aden, the Indian Ministry of Defense informed.
According to IMB Piracy Reporting Centre, armed persons attacked and boarded an offshore tug, in Nigeria, on April 19th, kidnapped eight crew members and escaped. Another similar case was reported by IMB, on the same day, in Nigeria. Nine pirates in a skiff approached and fired upon a tanker underway.
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