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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Somali Pirates: Hmmm . . . is a pirate port blockade coming?

Hints of a Somali pirate port blockade here:
The European Union says its flotilla combating piracy off the Somali coast will intensify surveillance of pirate ports and hunt motherships that act as logistics bases for the pirates.

Spanish Defense Minister Carme Chacon says EU defense ministers meeting here agreed to strengthen controls over pirate bases in coming months. She did not elaborate how this will be achieved.
I suggested such a blockade here. And suggested making the operating area of the pirates smaller here. And argued for a "containment" here:
The Somali pirates seem to be aware of limits on their behavior, judging by their relatively low ransom demands and the efficiency with which ransom negotiations take place. With the rare exception, the pirates have not killed hostages. Excessive demands or murdering hostages invites a more vigorous response.

The occasional raid, like those recently conducted by the French, may serve to remind the pirates that their continued existence hangs by a thread. This is part of the process of establishing bounds on pirate behavior which, if crossed, invite a swift and deadly reaction.

Containment involves limiting the damage that can be caused by pirates. This can be carried out by naval patrols, convoys, establishing safe routes and blockades of pirate ports, the very sort of activity we now see by naval units in the area.
Drones, patrol aircraft and lots of small fast boats to run down anything that leaves known pirate hangouts.

It could work.

UPDATE: This might be useful. Several of them would be useful.

UPDATE2: More here.
UPDATE3: And yet more here:

THE EU’s flotilla combating piracy plans to turn up the heat on pirate bases in the next few months, its spokesman told Fairplay today.

Royal Navy Commander John Harbour, speaking for EU NAVFOR, said EU surveillance of the bases would increase as Spain announced that EU defense ministers have agreed to stiffen measures against onshore pirate redoubts.

Spanish defense minister Carme Chacon did not elaborate to the Associated Press how this would be achieved, and Harbour said: “There are no full details of what she intends to do; we would expect details after a month.”

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:02 AM

    Fantastic news which I have long been waiting for. Looking forward to hearing an outcome of bolockade operation. JY from Japan