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Warships Kill Pirates

Pirates killed after attempting to hijack a Danish cargo vessel. An Indian bulker and Saudi and Turkish tankers attacked this week as well.

A helicopter and two boats were launched from the Russian frigate, NEUSTRASHIMY, and the British frigate, HMS CUMBERLAND, to chase down a Yemeni dhow involved in the attack on the Danish cargo ship MV POWERFUL.

As the two British boats approached the dhow its crew opened fire, which was returned by the British sailors. After an intense firefight, the crew of the dhow surrendered, and the vessel was boarded by the sailors. Two Somalis pirates were found dead and a Yemeni man was found wounded, but died later.

Joining the U.S. 5th Fleet in patrolling the Gulf of Aden, NATO now has seven warships and the EU is sending four to six ships, which will be supported by aircraft. The immediate plan is for the EU to replace the NATO ships, but officials are waiting to see if the recent rash of attacks will continue before removing the NATO ships.

On November 11, 2008 an Indian bulker MV JAG ARNAV sent a SOS that pirates were attempting to hijack it some 60 nautical miles east of Aden. The Indian frigate INS TABAR dispatched a helicopter with marine commandos to the area. Upon arrival the Indian Navy stated five high-speed attack boats with armed pirates were attempting to hijack the Indian vessel and a Saudi chemical tanker. The helicopter began firing on the speed boats as did the Indian Frigate, which had quickly arrived on the scene. The pirate boats fled the area and the two ships continued their voyages unabated. The Indian warship has been in the region assisting the UN’s World Food Program for Somalia humanitarian needs.

On November 12, 2008 the MV KARAGOL, a Turkish tanker, was hijacked 16 miles off of Yemen. The ship was transporting 4,500 tons of chemicals and has a crew of 14 Turkish sailors. Thirty-three vessels have been hijacked this year and 12 ships and their crews are still in pirate hands.