Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Pirates of the Caribbean style in Indian Ocean

The primary threat from piracy and armed robbery was found in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. There, with the leadership of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the dedicated efforts of countries in the region, the international shipping industry and non-governmental organizations, a number of multilateral initiatives have resulted in improved maritime safety, security, and environmental protection in the Straits. But just as progress was being realized in Southeast Asia, a dramatic and alarming surge in piracy and armed robbery occurred in the waters off the coast of Somalia. Fueled by the violent political and economic instability in Somalia, the lack of institutions and the continued proliferation of small arms and light weapons piracy and armed robbery have increasingly endangered legitimate shipping in the waters off the coast of Somalia. In particular,the Gulf of Aden.

Some years ago newly appointed president of Puntland Abdirahman Mohamud Farole, a former finance minister and banker, defeated seven other candidates and will lead the northern region for four years.
"I will eliminate the piracy... and will deal with the security," he said. Promises remained on the table.

In contrast to more traditional forms of piracy, the pirates hijack commercial ships off Somalia and hold the ships and their crews hostage for ransom. Somali pirates attacking beginning of February a vessell operated by a Malaysian company, owned by a Japanese firm, have been arrested and charged in Kuala Lumpur. Attacks on ships and yachts have increased. Unfortunately, last 22 February 4 American tourists taken from their yacht have been shot dead.

As stated in an article published the 1st of March on the Financial Times: "anti-piracy operations..., it's like a crime in France where you have to call in police from Austria"

And as always there is people transforming a problem in a business creating a t-shirts line. Hope at least part of the revenues will go for aid projects in Somalia, but I doubt...

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