ISWAN operates the Piracy Survivor Family Fund on behalf of the United Nations Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) for seafarers and families who have been affected by Somali piracy, and encourages any seafarer, seafarers’ welfare organisation, or seafarers’ families that have been affected by Somali piracy.
According to Iranian officials and the nonprofit Hostage Support Network, Somali pirates released an Iranian fisher after more than four years in captivity. According to John Steed, an HSN negotiator, he was released as the Somali pirates were unsure about whether he would survive.
Chirag Bahri, who today is ISWAN’s Regional Director, India and South Asia, was held captive by pirates in Somalian waters from May to December 2010, along with 21 fellow crewmembers of the chemical tanker, Marida Marguerite.
One Earth Future and Stable Seas launched the 2018 State of Maritime Piracy, focusing on the human cost of maritime piracy. The report has expanded its attention from just piracy in Somalia, to the Gulf of Guinea, Southeast Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean.
On 21 April, suspected pirates seized a fishing dhow off the coast of Somalia, holding 23 people hostage. In a few hours, the European Union’s counter-piracy force EU NAVFOR Somalia Operation Atalanta had responded to the attack. Two days later, the incident had ended, with Operation Atalanta detaining five suspects and releasing the 23 hostages.
The ECSA delegation met with the EU NAVFOR’s team to discuss the current state of piracy off the coast of Somalia, also visiting the naval assets participating in Operation Atalanta. EU NAVFOR is committed to deter, prevent, and suppress piracy and also highlight that the Maritime Industry must continue to adhere to BMP measures in order to maximize the safety of the ships and crews whilst transiting the high-risk area.
On 21 April, fishing vessels FV Adria and FV Txori Argi were attacked by suspected pirates in the Indian Ocean, 280 NM off the coast of Somalia, EU NAVFOR reported. The piracy attacks were thwarted, and the crew and vessels remained safe, due to the implementation of Best Management Practices protection measures by the Masters, the crews and the private security teams on both fishing vessels.
A ceremony took place today in Rota Naval Base, Cadiz, Spain, to mark the relocation of the operation Headquarters of EU NAVFOR Atalanta Operation. The relocation comes in view of Britain’s planned departure from the EU.
With the proliferation of instruments and institutions over the last decade, the time has come to focus on deconflicting and coordinating the various portions of the maritime security architecture around Africa, said Dr. Ian Ralby, the Africa Center’s faculty lead for maritime law and security.
While speaking at the last SAFETY4SEA Conference in Cyprus, Mr. Dimitris Maniatis, Chief Commercial Officer, Diaplous Maritime Services, provided a recap of the current maritime security status, focusing on key high risk areas, such as the Indian Ocean region and West African waters. For the Gulf of Guinea, he stressed, Piracy and Maritime Aggression is never ending.
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