Tuesday, November 21, 2017

EU Naval Forces Detains Suspected Somali Pirates

Two attacks in 24 hours leads to arrests
Shipping News Feature
SOMALIA – EU NAVFOR Somalia’s Flagship, the Italian vessel ITS Virginio Fasan, apprehended six suspected pirates and seized their vessels; a motor whaler acting as mother ship, and a skiff, following attacks on the 4,211 TEU container ship Ever Dynamic and a fishing vessel, the Galerna III. These events reportedly took place over a 24 hour period on 17th and 18th November in the Southern Somali Basin, in an area known for piracy incidents.

During the incidents a number of rocket propelled grenades were fired against the container ship. However, adherence to Best Management Practice (BMP4), the presence of a security team on one of the vessels, and good seamanship avoided any damage or injuries, and all crew and vessels are now safe.

The Ever Dynamic is a container ship owned by Evergreen operating under a Panamanian flag and was attacked as she travelled from Colombo to Mombasa. The Galerna III is a fishing vessel operating under a Seychellois Flag out of Port Victoria.

The suspected pirates were apprehended by the Italian Marines from ITS Virginio Fasan after their vessels were located using Fasan’s SH-90 helicopter, following initial searches by the Spanish Maritime Patrol Aircraft Cisne. This search for the suspected pirates was coordinated with partners and from information provided by the masters of the vessels concerned. Positive visual verification was made which allowed this to take place.

A legal process has now begun for the suspected pirates to be transferred to the appropriate authority for prosecution. EU NAVFOR was able respond rapidly and successfully to these incidents due to the combined efforts of all involved, maximising synchronisation with all EU NAVFOR partners and forward deployed capabilities.