MUMBAI: Director General of Shipping on 6th April has issued Maritime Security Advisory urging Indian ships/vessels not to transit Gulf of Aden (GoA) in the wake of recent piracy incident on Indian Mechanized Sailing Vessel (MSV) on the coast of Somalia region. The attention of all Indian ship owners is invited to the information shared by Korean Naval ship, UK Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) and International Maritime Bureau (IMB) regarding hijacking of Indian Mechanized Sailing Vessel transiting Gulf of Aden off Socotra.
Having serious concern of stated facts of hijacking of MSVs by pirate and understanding the fact of MSVs not being able to track and monitor through Long Range Information Tracking (LRIT) system, therefore all sailing vessel associations are strongly advised not to transit Gulf of Aden, says DG Shipping advisory. Noting further the consequences of the present situation involving MSVs being hijacked for ransom. All the owners, operators and masters of all Indian ships including sailing vessels and fishing vessels are hereby cautioned not to enter into this region and keep their vessels well clear of this region and preferably keeping a safe distance of at least more than 200 nautical miles from the coast. Those who violate the instructions and decide to operate their vessels in these waters would be doing so at their own risk only.
An Indian cargo ship Al Kaushar with 11 crew members on board has been hijacked by Somali pirates on its way to AI Mukala Port in Yemen from Dubai on 1st April. All the crew members on the ship belong to Mandavi in Mumbai. Describing the incident, the Captain of the ship informed the owner that a skiff had approached them seeking water.
The owners of the ship want to get in touch with the hijackers to try and figure out how the ship can be repatriated. Last month, pirates had seized control of a Somali fishing boat to use as a base from which to attack larger ships, a week after Somali pirates hijacked their first commercial vessel since 2012. As many as ten Yemeni crew aboard the boat were offloaded on the shore.
Close on heels of the recent hijack, the Somali pirates had returned Comoros-flagged oil tanker after five years.