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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Somali Pirates: Learning Curve -"Pirates use 'decoy' tactics to capture LPG tanker"

Evidence that the Somali pirates have good tactical sense and are on the learning curve: Pirates use 'decoy' tactics to capture LPG tanker:
SOMALIAN pirates today captured a German-owned LPG tanker participating in a convoy through the Gulf of Aden Maritime Security Patrol Area, diverting Chinese and Indian warships with a decoy raid to enable colleagues to seize a small ship with low freeboard.

The pirates’ latest victim is the1990-built, 4,316 dwt Longchamp, operated by Hamburg-based Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement, with 12 Filipinos and one Indonesian national onboard.

The attack took place in the early hours of this morning while the ship was within the MPSA under military protection, said Schulte quality and safety manager Frank Lesse.

“There were apparently three ships attacked, which diverted the attention of the warships, and unfortunately the ship that was taken hostage by the pirates was the Longchamp.”

“The Indian warship tried to repel the attack but was too late. [Longchamp] is a small LPG with a low freeboard, so she is easy to board. The pirates picked her, went on board, and the other pirates vacated the scene.

“The Indian warship kept a safe distance, so as not to aggravate the pirates. Then the ship turned hard to starboard and went straight for the Somali coast.”
Someone has been using their weather down time wisely!

First report >here.

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