Monday, February 28, 2011

Somali Pirates: Hijack Danish Family Including 3 Children

BBC reports Somali pirates 'seize Danish children' in Indian Ocean:
Three Danish children and their parents have been snatched by pirates who hijacked their sailing boat in the Indian Ocean, Danish officials say.

Denmark's foreign ministry said the children were aged between 12 and 16, and that two Danish crew members were also captured during the attack.

Pirates seized the boat on 24 February and were said to be heading to Somalia.
The foreign ministry told the AP news agency that the ship sent a distress signal on Thursday: "It has now been confirmed that the sailboat was hijacked by pirates."

The Danes are be the second group of non-commercial sailors seized by pirates in recent weeks.
This is not the time to debate the wisdom of sailing into a known danger zone with your family. Instead, the discussion ought to be about whether the pirates have enough compassion to free the family and, if they don't, what steps need to be taken to (a) get the family released alive or (b) punitive measures to be employed if any harm is done to these and other hostage.


  1. Too much sea to control as has been suggested by various authorities? See here and links therein for thoughts on containing the pirates.

  2. Anonymous: For some reason your comment didn't stick, so I'm posting it as a quote below:
    "When will the world accept that this is a stalemate that cannot be resolved without internal regime change, or the application of international force?
    Neither look likely, therefore we should make financial provisions to cater for future ransoms, and only those that have to be there should be eligible for a financial settlement. Use of force will only kill more innocent sailors. No nation has the capability to control a hostage release operation with the certainty of no deaths (I know; I'm an ex-Royal Marine Officer with 20 years experience of this stuff) and after the "Samho Jewelry" incident no pirates will get caught out like that again.
    An assault on Somalia's "garage"(currently holding 33 ships) will only end with over 700 dead sailors, and that assumes that the multi-national CTG could agree on how to do it. Who wants that blood on their conscience? In that event it would only allow the pirates the excuse to be even more bloody and it has to be said that our navies can't even control the Gulf of Aden, let alone the rest of the watery globe.
    Finally, an invasion of Somalia will only cause the dispersal of piracy as they shuffle around the African continent and re-negotiate their stance with the local hoods. With ransoms of $9.5 million being paid this is far too lucrative to give up.
    Accepting the staus quo and spreading the down- stream costs equally allows us to contain the problem; draconian solutions may give a temporary lift to national pride (S Korea, US) but will not solve the problem, just force it further afield; and once pirates become idealogically motivated no ransom will satisfy their need for revenge.
    Let's stay smart people, and not get gung ho. Piracy, like terrorism, has been around for centuries, what makes us think it's going to be eradicated today? Or ever? "