By Josh Meyer
The US State Department recently announced that it will send a senior official, Tom Kelly, to the Bahamas to formally strengthen bi-lateral cooperation on global counter-piracy.
At first glance the report seemed a bit odd, seeing that the so-called Pirates of the Caribbean haven’t commandeered a ship in those waters for a couple of centuries.
However, the reason is that the Bahamas is one of the countries often chosen for registering and [...]
Piracy is just as alive today as it was in the distant past
Ship owners risk crew and cargo every time they send their vessels to certain parts of the world, such as the Gulf of Aden, the Malacca Strait, South America and West and East Africa.
Pirates took in an estimated $160 million in ransom last year, and one study predicts the number will climb to $400 million by 2015.
Twenty-two hostages seized by pirates nearly three years ago have been freed from the Panama-flagged “MV Iceberg One”. The BBC was informed by authorities in Somalia’s semi-autonomous region of Puntland that their maritime force began the operation to free the hostages – and their ship – nearly two weeks ago. The hostages were reportedly showing signs of having suffered physical torture and illness.
Local pirates may soon need to find a new line of work, as the International Police (Interpol) have joined an Asian regional maritime security forum in an effort to step up security in regional waters.
Interpol signed an agreement with the Information Sharing Center-Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships (ISC-ReCAAP) in Asia, the Indonesian Maritime Security Center (Pikmi) said in a statement.
Pikmi head Mohammad Yasin said that the agreement [...]
“Operation Atalanta” is the name of the European Union operation against piracy in the Indian Ocean that has been heralded the most successful EU mission to date.
Since December 1, Spain assumed command of the operation, which is set to run until December 2012. It is now likely to be extended.
At a meeting of EU defence and foreign affairs ministers in Brussels, acting Spanish Minister for Defence, Carme Chacón, proposed Operation Atalanta be extended [...]