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Italian Tanker Hijacked off Oman December 28, 2011

Posted by Chris Mark in Industry News, Piracy & Maritime Security.
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An Italian tanker carrying caustic soda was hijacked early Tuesday near Oman.  The ship was carrying 18 people including 6 Italians, 5 Ukrainians, and 7 Indians.   The ship, which wasn’t named, is owned by Manarvi.

As West Africa Piracy Increase….Naval Forces to Decrease in 2012 October 12, 2011

Posted by Chris Mark in Piracy & Maritime Security, Uncategorized.
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In what is sure to be a winning combination, piracy in West Africa is increasingly substantially while Lloyds list today published an article indicating that Naval support for anti-piracy efforts will decrease sharply in 2012.  It was announced todaythat another vessel was hijacked off the coast of Nigeria.  According to the IMB a tanker was hijacked off the coast of Nigeria.  A spokesperson for the IMB stated: “The vessel is still under captivity…We believe the crew is still on board,” according to the official of the piracy watchdog, who added that there was “no indication that the crew has been taken away”.

While Somali pirates are becoming increasingly violent and desperate as attacks are thwarted and piracy on the West Coast of Africa is increasing, the international community has seen fit to decrease the presence in high risk waters.  Reasons given are austerity measures being enacted as well as the need for vessels to support operations in Libya and other areas in the Middle East and North Africa.  Regardless of the reasons, the end result is likely to be the same.  Increases in pirate attacks on merchant vessels.  It is imperative that ship owners and other stakeholders consider the use of armed guards on their vessels as 2012 is sure to see a marked increase in piracy on both the East and West coasts of Africa.

Private Yacht hijacked off Yemen then rescued same day as Danish family release! September 11, 2011

Posted by Chris Mark in Uncategorized.
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On the day that a Danish family was released after months in captivity, an unidentified sailing yacht was taken by pirates on September 08, 2011 off the coast of Yemen: Latitude 15 27 N Longitude 052 14 E.

The yacht has now been identified as the catamaran TRIBAL KAT, heading west to east and crewed by the owners, a French couple Christian and Evelyne Colombo.  The pirates’ vessel was sunk by a Spanish warship the SPS GALICIA and Evelyne Colombo recovered unharmed and 7 pirates arrested, however,  her husband Christian is missing and is reported to have been killed during the initial hijack.

Owners of private vessels are urged to seriously consider avoiding High Risk Waters, as we’re seeing an increase in the numbers of private vessels attacked.  As is the tragic case here, pirates are becoming far more violent with killing of hostages during violent takeovers becoming routine.


Danish family held by Somali pirates since February released! September 7, 2011

Posted by Chris Mark in Uncategorized.
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COPENHAGEN, Denmark –  Seven Danish hostages, including a family with teenage children, have been released by Somali pirates after more than six months in captivity, Denmark’s Foreign Ministry said Wednesday.

The Danes — a couple with three children ages 12-16 and two crew members — were captured in the Indian Ocean on Feb. 24 while sailing around the world in a yacht.

“The seven Danes are doing well under the circumstances. They are expected back in Denmark in a short time,” the ministry said in a brief statement.

It gave no details of how they were released and made no mention of a ransom being paid. No one at the Foreign Ministry was immediately available for comment.

Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen told public broadcaster DR that the Danes were on their way back in a chartered airplane paid for by their insurance company. Loekke Rasmussen said their release came after “a long period of negotiations.”

Hostages are held in hot, austere conditions in Somalia — typically for many months — before a ransom is agreed on and paid, and the hijacked ships and crew are released. Last year, a British sailing couple were released after 388 days in captivity. Reports indicated

Somali pirates release vessel after 10 months in captivity August 30, 2011

Posted by Chris Mark in Uncategorized.
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A Greece based shipping company has spoken of its distress during a piracy experience following the release of its hijacked tanker after 10 months in captivity.While Paradise Navigation, operators and managers of the 72,825 dwt product tanker MV Polar said it was “delighted” with the freeing, they were frustrated that owners and operators have been unaided against piracy.

While faced with many decisions on how to deal with piracy, ultimately shipping companies need to remain proactive in protecting their interests.  The community can’t afford to wait for intervention by international governments.  The message is loud and clear, this is an industry problem and needs to be dealt with by the industry.

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