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Monday, February 22, 2010

Somali Pirates: CTF 151 Stops Attack, Apprehends 8 "Suspects"

Reported by NavCent here:
Singapore Led Flagship Apprehends Pirates
By Commander Combined Maritime Forces

MANAMA, Bahrain – Coalition warships from Combined Task Force (CTF) 151 have apprehended suspected pirates in the Gulf of Aden. The Tanzanian-flagged MV Barakaale 1 came under attack whilst transiting through the region and the timely response by the Master in alerting vessels in the region by bridge-to-bridge radio communication enabled ships from CTF 151 to come to its aid.

A SH-60B Seahawk helicopter, from USS Farragut, was immediately dispatched to the MV Barakaale and subsequently gave chase to the skiff which withdrew its attack.

During the pirate attack on the MV Barakaale 1, the crew adopted defensive maneuvers which resulted in a suspected pirate falling overboard whilst attempting to board the vessel. The skiff rescued their accomplice and attempted to board MV Barakaale a second time, but they were again unsuccessful.

The helicopter intervened and the skiff attempted to speed away. After repeated warnings to the skiff, warning shots were fired by the helicopter across the bow of the skiff, which resulted in its coming to a stop. A boarding team from USS Farragut boarded the vessel and the eight suspected pirates were taken aboard the Farragut. The quick action by CTF 151 and the crew of the Barakaale prevented a successful pirate attack from occurring.

Commander, CTF 151, Rear Adm. Bernard Miranda, Republic of Singapore Navy, applauded the effort by all parties in coordinating the response to the incident. “The merchant community has clearly demonstrated that they can defend themselves by being the first line of defence against piracy by adopting the recommended ‘best management practices’. A helicopter from USS Farragut was able to be dispatched and go to the aid of the MV Barakaale and subsequently gave chase of the skiff. The Master of the Barakaale did the right thing by not stopping his vessel and adopting non-kinetic measures like evasive maneuvers, to deter the pirates from getting on board,” Miranda said.

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