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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Somali Pirates: Warnings

Somali Pirate Warnings:
September 21, 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 06 59N Longitude: 049 24E
Alert number 408 / 2010.

Pirated FV PRANTALAY 14 left Garacad anchorage (06 59N 049 24E) in the morning of the 20 SEP.
Three skiffs and three ladders were sighted on board. The FV is probably involved in mother ship operations.

September 20, 2010
WARNING Somali Basin
Latitude: 01 17N Longitude: 052 51E
Alert number 407 / 2010.

At 0847 UTC on 19th SEP a Pirate Action Group consisting of 1 white wooden skiff (approx 5m long) and 1 blue fibreglass whaler (approx 10m long) was reported in position 01 17N 052 51 E.
 Monsoon weather in the area is beginning to clear allowing small boat operation in the Indian Ocean and raises the possibility of increased pirate attacks, though it's still brisk. See the wind maps on the right side.

Meanwhile, the Thai Navy is going pirate hunting:
Two Thai navy ships with 351 sailors and 20 special warfare troops on board have set sail for the Gulf of Aden to take part in the hunt for pirates off the coast of Somalia. The mission marks the first time Thailand has sent forces overseas to protect its own interest. The HTMS Pattani (OPV 511) and HTMS Similan (Oiler) left yesterday with two helicopters lashed to the decks from Chuk Samet port at Chon Buri's Sattahip naval base to join a 28-country effort to police the shipping lanes off the Somali coast, which has become a piracy hotbed.
The use of the fishing boat extends the pirate's range substantially.

UPDATE: USS Kaufffman (FFG-59) busy stopping attacks:
Yesterday afternoon the helicopter from NATO warship USS KAUFFMAN located a suspicious skiff with five suspected pirates on board. USS KAUFFMAN is operating as part of NATO’s maritime counter-piracy task force in the Gulf of Aden. As USS KAUFFMAN closed to investigate the skiff, the nearby helicopter of coalition warship ENDURANCE from the Singapore Navy, operating with Combined Task Force 151, also closed to support.
“The level of cooperation between navies is exceptional,” said Commander Dale W. Maxey, Commanding Officer aboard USS KAUFFMAN. “We may represent different nations but we all have the same goal in mind - to deter piracy in the area.”
As both helicopters approached, the pirates threw a long ladder, which they use to scale innocent merchant ships, in to the sea, together with other pirate related items. As soon as she was close enough, USS KAUFFMAN sent her boarding team to search the skiff, and so ensure the suspected pirates could no longer pose a threat to shipping.
RSS Endurance is an LPD. Photos are of class ships.

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