Somalia: first pirate attack in eight months

Somali pirates photographed in January 2010 in the Gulf of Aden. Photo: AFP

NEWSROOM (ADV) – On the afternoon of October 16, a merchant ship was attacked off Somalia. The assault was repelled thanks to armed guards on board. This is the first attack for eight months. Proof that the phenomenon, even if it has dropped considerably, remains a threat.

On 16 October, MV KSL Sydney, a Hong Kong-flagged bulk carrier, was attacked by pirates 630 kilometers south-east of the Somali coast.

On board a skiff, a small speedboat, the attackers fired and could approach up to fifty meters from their target. The crew of the MV KSL Sydney then took refuge in the citadel, a secure room closed from the inside found on many boats.

But the Hong Kong ship also had an armed security team on board, which responded to the attack. A shootout broke out and the assailants eventually turned around.

The alert was given in particular to EUNAVFOR, the European anti-piracy mission. Vigilance messages were sent to merchant vessels in the area and observation flights were conducted.

This is the first incident of its kind since last February. In 2017, piracy had resumed, with seven attacks recorded by EUNAVFOR, far from the 176 attacks of 2011.

© Bur-csa – N.W – African Daily Voice (ADV)