GE ‘attack’ foiled

A Great Eastern (GE) Shipping bulker had to call on the help of the Indian Navy to foil a suspected pirates attack in the Gulf of Aden on Tuesday

Crew onboard the 71,100-dwt Jag Arnav (built 1995) became suspicious of two small boats following it about 60 miles off Aden and radioed for assistance.
The nearby compatriot warship INS Tabar immediately dispatched a helicopter with commandos who were able to ward off the suspected pirates.

There are no injuries to 25 Indian crew members or damage to the India-flagged ship.

The INS Tabar, which was only 25 miles from the attack site when it received the distress signal, later reached the Jag Arnav and is currently escorting it as it resumes it journey to Saudi Arabia.

The Jag Arnav was en route from Odessa to the Saudi port of Al Jubail with a cargo of barley. There is an all-Indian crew of 25 onboard.

The latest attack comes after a Stolt-chartererd chemical tanker was hijacked and a UK-operated reefer came under fire off Somalia on Monday.

There are 23 Filipino crew members onboard the 33,200-dwt Stolt Strength (built 2005) which is reported to be sailing down the east coast of Somalia following capture in the Gulf of Aden.

Also on Monday a Saudi Arabia-flagged reefer – believed to be either of the 602,800-cbf pair Al Moshtaree or Al Mareekh (both built 1984) - came under fire from heavily armed pirates about 250 miles off the coast of Mogadishu.

The International Maritime Bureau’s Piracy Reporting Centre in Kuala Lumpur reported a surge in reports between Monday and Tuesday from ships on suspicious craft seen in or near the Gulf of Aden.

This week's incidents follow the seizure of a Clipper Group ship in the Gulf of Aden on Friday which has led the Danish owner to secure a naval escort for another ship in its fleet currently transiting the area.

"Clipper would like to report that their [8,874-dwt] operated and managed vessel CEC Commander [built 1998], sailing with a Russian crew, is currently under the escort of a Russian naval vessel," a statement from the Dane read on Tuesday.

There are 13 crew onboard the 7,300-dwt multi-purpose CEC Future which was hijacked en route from the Mediterranean to Malaysia with a cargo of steel.


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