|Reported Yacht Hijacking (click to enlarge)|
Somali pirates on Friday hijacked a yacht with four Americans on board in the Indian Ocean, a non-governmental organisation monitoring regional maritime activity said.Ecoterra International said the S/V Quest was seized in the afternoon 240 nautical miles (275 miles) off the coast of Oman.
SV Quest from SV Quest.com, the sailing diary of the yacht owners
"S/V Quest was attacked by pirates in the Indian Ocean and the four Americans on board are being held hostage," it said.
"The sailing yacht was reportedly now en route from India to Mina Raysut, the industrial port of Salalah, Oman," Ecoterra added.
The S/V Quest's owners, retired couple Jean and Scott Adam, have been sailing around the world for more than seven years and detailed in a December update on their website what their travel plans would be for 2011.
Pre-UPDATE: NATO report here:
February 18, 2011
Latitude: 18°00 N Longitude: 061°02 E
Alert number 092 / 2011.
At 1323 UTC / 18 FEB 11 / a Yacht was reported Hijacked by pirates in position 18°00 N 061°02 E.
***This vessel has been hijacked***
NATO Standing Warning to Yachts:
The danger of piracy in the Gulf of Aden and Somali Basin is high and continues to increase. Naval forces strongly recommend that yachts do not transit this area. Merchant ships use Best Management Practices (BMP) to win time for the naval forces to assist them. With a low freeboard and slow speed, yachts are particularly vulnerable to pirate attack. Any direct response from naval assets will depend on the proximity to the incident and may not occur. BMP3 and the self protection measures described in them were not designed for cruising yachts nor will they be sufficient to prevent boardings by Somali pirates.UPDATE: MSC(HOA) reports a hijacked Yemeni fishing boat here
On the 13 February, the Yemeni Fishing Vessel ALFARDOUS was believed to have been pirated close to Socotra Island in the Gulf of Aden.
EU Map of Alfardous Hijacking Locale
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.