Defensive measures needed by commercial and civilian vessels in the region

January 26, 2010

The US Navy has again encouraged commercial and civilian vessels to incorporate anti-piracy “best practices” to prevent acts of piracy when operating in dangerous waters. “Best practices include maintaining a 24-hour lookout for suspicious activity, reporting any suspicious activity to authorities, engaging in evasive maneuvering and speed during a pirate attack, and contracting civilian security teams,” the Bahrain-headquartered Navy said. “Embarked security teams have proven to be the most effective practice to defend against pirate attacks. Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), operating out of Bahrain, continues to urge mariners to employ defensive measures when transiting the Horn of Africa, Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.” The fresh warnings came after Napht Al Yemen 1, a North Korea-flagged Yemeni-owned, ship successfully repelled a pirate attack in the Gulf of Aden near the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC). “The initial distress call made by Napht Al Yemen 1, was received by US Navy destroyer Pinckney which responded immediately by sending a Seahawk helicopter to intercept the pirate skiff. However, the security team on board the Napht Al Yemen was able to repel the pirates,” the Navy said. “The suspected pirate skiff was identified through the combined efforts of Pinckney’s helicopter and maritime patrol aircraft belonging to Combined Task Force 465, which is part of the European Union forces in the Gulf. The pirate skiff was subsequently stopped and boarded by the boarding team from USS Porter (DDG78).” It was the first successful boarding since the Singapore Navy took over command of CTF 151 on January 20. Rear Admiral Bernard Miranda from the Royal Singapore Navy and Commander of CTF 151praised all parties in coordinating the response to the piracy attack. “Whilst the primary responsibility for the security of merchant vessels lies with industry, close coordination among all military forces operating in the region is a critical factor in harnessing the capabilities of these forces to respond to such incidents,” Miranda said. CTF 151 is a multi-national task force established in January 2009 to conduct counter piracy operations and actively deter piracy in order to protect global maritime security and secure freedom of navigation. It operates in the Gulf of Aden and the east coast of Somalia.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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