M A I N   N E W S

14 Indian sailors rescued from Somali pirates 
Ashok Tuteja/TNS

New Delhi, June 7
Fourteen Indian sailors have been rescued from the clutches of Somali pirates in a joint EU-NATO counter-piracy operation in the Gulf of Aden, the EU said here today. “Fourteen Indian soldiers are now safe, after pirates, who took control of their cargo vessel on June 5 in the Gulf of Aden, abandoned the attack hours later after EU Naval warship HSwMS Carlskrona, together with NATO counter piracy Dutch warship HNLMS Van Speijk closed in,” a statement from the EU office said.

This type of cargo vessel, known as a ‘dhow’, has been used in the past by pirates as a ‘mother ship’, to enable them to sail far out to sea to attack passing merchant ships.

The EU added that the master of the Indian ‘dhow’ had sent out an alert yesterday morning, saying that it was under attack from 12 armed pirates. Upon hearing the alert, Royal Swedish Navy warship, HSwMS Carlskrona, which has been part of the EU’s counter piracy mission, Operation Atalanta, since April 6, closed the scene and as darkness fell, maintained a constant watch on the vessel.

As the Swedish helicopter from HSwMS Carlskrona overflew the scene, the pirates, now under increasing pressure from the military forces, forced the master to close the Somali coast so they could abandon the vessel in the dead of the night.

Shortly afterwards, it was with a great sense of relief that the Indian master was able to report to the EU Naval Force that all pirates had left the ship and that none of his crew were injured.

Speaking about the incident, the Operation Commander of the EU Naval Force, Rear Admiral Bob Tarrant was quoted as saying, “what is important is that 14 Indian sailors are now safe and able to return to their families, after what must have been a terrifying ordeal. This latest attack once again shows that the threat from piracy is real. We must all remain vigilant.”





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