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calendar   Friday - May 25, 2012

An Almost Pefect Picture

image

Flames erupt into the sky from a skiff floating adrift in the Indian Ocean, a powerful demonstration of the Royal Navy’s might as it fights the scourge of Somali piracy.

The boat was blown out of the water by a Merlin helicopter, flown from HMS Westminster, which strafed the vessel, setting fire to fuel tanks.

The pirate crew fled to another vessel before the attack, but were among 12 arrested without a fight by boarding teams from the frigate shortly after.


Like I said, almost pefect.

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Don’t Mess With Texas

May 23 (Reuters) - The Maersk Texas, a multi-purpose dry cargo ship, was attacked by pirates in the Gulf of Oman but guards repelled the attack, Maersk Line Ltd, a unit of Danish shipping and oil group A.P. Moller-Maersk , said on Wednesday.

The Maersk Texas, a U.S.-flagged 19,592 deadweight tonnes (dwt) vessel, 148 metres (486 feet) long, came under attacked by pirates in skiffs at noon on Wednesday while transiting the Gulf of Oman, northeast of Fujairah, Maersk Line Ltd said.

Despite warnings, the pirates continued to approach the vessel and then fired upon it, after which a security team returned fire in accordance with U.S. Coast Guard rules of engagement, Maersk Line Ltd said.

“All hands onboard are safe and unharmed, and the vessel is proceeding on its voyage,” Maersk Line Ltd said.

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Latest News: Somali Pirates 0 for 4 this last 2 weeks

23.05.2012: 1300 UTC: Posn: 12:45N – 043:18E, Bab El Mandeb Straits, Red Sea.
Pirates in three skiffs approached a bulk carrier underway. Master raised alarm, informed UKMTO and alerted the armed security team onboard. Weapons sighted on the skiffs when they closed to 300 metres from the ship. The armed security team fired warning shots resulting in the pirates aborted the attempted attack and moved away.

23.05.2012: 0900 UTC: Posn: 25:29.6N – 057:16.8E Around 28nm WSW of Bandar-e-Jask, Iran, (Off Somalia).
D/O onboard a general cargo ship underway noticed a group of 10 skiffs at a distance of 2nm from the ship on the stbd side. The forward skiff broke off from the group and approached the ship at a speed of 20-25 knots. Master and security team informed. Alarm raised, fire hoses and SSAS activated. UKMTO and navies informed. The ship increased speed and commenced manoeuvring away from the skiffs. As the skiffs closed to 500meters the armed security team fired warning shots. The skiffs ignored the warning shots and continued to approach aggressively and weapons were sighted on the skiffs. As the skiffs closed to 300meters the security team once again fired at the skiffs and it was noticed that the skiffs returned fire towards the ship. Eleven additional skiffs were sighted on the port side advancing towards the ship. As the security team fired warning shots these skiffs stopped and moved away. The skiffs on the stbd side continued to chase the ship and then after around 12 minutes from the initial approach the skiffs moved away towards a large dhow in the vicinity. No damages and no injuries to crew.

18.05.2012: 2000 LT: Posn: 25:20.9N – 057:34.6E (Around 25nm South of Ra’s-e Jask, Iran), Off Somalia.
Three skiffs chased a crude tanker underway and approached close to the stern. Alarm sounded, authorities and nearby warship contacted. Later the skiffs aborted the boarding and moved away.

12.05.2012: 1140 UTC: Posn: 13:52N-042:52E, Red Sea.
About 12 pirates chased and closed in to 0.2nm from a LPG Tanker underway. Master enforced anti piracy measures and increased speed. The onboard security team displayed their weapons and the boats then moved away. All crew and vessel are safe.

You saw that second report? 21 skiffs acting as a wolf pack to attack a merchant vessel. I can’t see how this is “off Somalia” since it’s 6 feet from Persia. And I didn’t notice a word in there about the vaunted Iranian Navy rescuing anyone or fighting off the pirates. But you can see in these reports that ship security has progressed from the barbed wire and fire hoses of a couple years back to teams of armed mercenaries aboard, and they start shooting when the skiffs close to half a kilometer. Pity they don’t hit more often ... or perhaps that bit doesn’t get reported.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 05/25/2012 at 01:05 AM   
Filed Under: • Pirates, aarrgh! •  
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