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Monday, October 25, 2010

Somali Pirates: Busy Days

NATO reports 3 ship hijackings in the last 2 days:

24 October 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 00°54 S Longitude: 043°08 E
Alert number 440/2010.
***This vessel has been hijacked***
At 1311 UTC 23 OCT 2010 a dhow was reported Hijacked by pirates in position 00°54 S 043°08 E.
Weapons such as RPG were used. Dhow present position 01°31 S 043°28 E heading 050 speed 7kts.

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October 24 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 03°29N Longitude: 059°35 E
Alert number 439 / 2010.
***This vessel has been hijacked*** [Eagle1 note: correlates with ship hijack reported here]
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October 23 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 04°14 S Longitude: 041°17 E
Alert number 438/ 2010. ---ALERT UPDATE---
Reference previous Alert number 437/ 2010.
At 1235 UTC a merchant vessel is currently under attack by 2 x skiffs in position 04°14S 041°17 E.
***This vessel has been hijacked*** [Eagle1 note: correlates with LPG tank hijack reported here]

At 0542 UTC a merchant vessel was reported Hijacked by pirates in position 03°29 N 059°35 E.
2 skiff were used with 4 POB. Weapons were used.
--------------------------------
October 23 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 04°14S Longitude: 041°19E
Alert number 437/ 2010.
At 1235 UTC a merchant vessel is currently under attack by 2 x skiffs in position 01°14S 041°19 E.
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UPDATE: Pirates have been cleared from ship, as reported here and by NATO Shipping Center:
October 25 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 02°58 N Longitude: 059°55 E
Alert number 441/ 2010. ---ALERT UPDATE---
Reference previous Alert number 439/ 2010.
At 0542 UTC a merchant vessel was reported Hijacked by pirates in position 03°29N 059°35E. 2 skiff were used with 4 POB. Weapons were used.
THE Pirate Action Group PIRATED THE MV AND THEN LEFT HER.
Last position 02°58N 059°55E.
***This vessel managed to evade hijack***
The Pirate action group is still in the area.
More here:
German military and international anti-piracy forces attacked a cargo ship being held by Somali pirates off eastern Africa and freed it Monday, but the hijackers got away, the German shipping company said.
***The German military freed the ship in cooperation with the anti-pirate mission Operation Atalanta, the shipping company said, adding that the ship was now on its way to South Africa as planned.

Nils Stolberg, the director of the Beluga-Reederei, said in a statement that one of the main reasons the military was able to free the ship so quickly was that the crew had trained for an emergency situation like this many times over the years.

"They sent out an emergency call, barricaded themselves in a special security room, shut off the fuel supply and the bridge and informed the military," Stolberg said. "This way the pirates could not bring the ship under their control or take the sailors at ransom."
And even more here:
Pirates had already left the ship by the time British frigate Montrose arrived at the scene Monday after steaming 15 hours to Beluga Fortune's aid. All 16 crewmembers were safe, the Beluga shipping company told the newspaper Weser Kurier.
The Beluga Fortune is now a success story of German shipping companies' standard procedures of shutting down all power and hiding the crew when a ship is attacked.
The ship's crew radioed at 7 a.m. on Sunday that pirates were attempting to board. They then immediately stopped the engine, blocked the fuel line and switched off all systems on the bridge - making it impossible for the pirates to move the ship.

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