Somali Pirates Hijack Ship in Omani Port?!?!?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            This photo was taken aboard a ship I was visiting years ago when I lived in Pohang, South Korea and was involved in volunteer work at the port.  I remember being amused that such a poster would be aboard a modern vessel.  “This is the 21st century”,  I thought.  “Pirates are surely a thing of the past, aren’t they? Something for adventure films like “Pirates of the Caribbean”.”

Since that time, Somali pirates have obviously been reported more and more in the news and I’m sure just about everyone has heard (enough) about various pirate activity over the years.  I remember applauding the South Koreans for storming a Korean vessel that had been captured by Pirates earlier this year and rescuing all of the 21 crew members, killing 8 pirates and dragging another 5 of them back to South Korea to be sentenced there.  Good job, South Korea!!!  I wonder why international troops are not taking the threat more seriously.  I read somewhere that such piracy could cost the global economy something like 12 billion dollars a year.  Here’s a good article on “the real cost of piracy” and just bear in mind that this was written in 2009.

I had never heard of pirate activity around Oman before so I was quite suprised to read the recent article about pirates hijacking a ship off the waters in Oman. (Read about it here from Muscat Daily)  According to that article, 12 merchant ships have been hijacked so far this year in or around Omani waters!  I totally agree with Sjoerd Both, a maritime security consultant and former commander of the regional coalition Combined Maritime Forces, who stated that “until the international community is ready to inflict real pain on the pirates nothing will change for the better.”  Here’s a good argument for more decisive action from a New Zealand blogger.

The most recent hijack was not done miles and miles off the coast.  This was done in what should have been the safe confines of the port of Salalah!  This is, in my humble opinion, like a declaration of war on the Sultanate of Oman and I say that Oman should act with full force to not only protect its own waters but take charge in ridding the seas of these vermin.  Another motivation to fight this piracy is the fact that some of the ransom money shelled out to these thieves goes directly into terrorists’ hands.

I’m glad that the Omani government is taking at least some action.  Since the hijacking of MV Fairchem Bogey and its 21-member crew, round the clock naval patrols have been initiated around Salalah.  I hope they will take stronger actions in the near future against these Somali thieves.
Maybe this could be an answer to some of the unemployemnt issues with young men in the Sultanate.  Sign them up for the navy.  Have a new fleet of gunships built and blow the pirates out of the waters.  That would surely put Oman on the map and the Sultanate would be doing the world a big favor!

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6 responses to “Somali Pirates Hijack Ship in Omani Port?!?!?

  1. mumoftheanimals

    HI Andy,
    Really interesting article. However, I think it is on the international radar. My niece, who is in the British navy, is currently on active service patrolling the pirate-ridden areas. This is part of an international exercise (I understand).

  2. Hey moa,
    You must be quite proud to have a niece patrolling the Somali pirate infested area…but also a bit worried. I’ll be praying for her safety. Good to hear that they do in fact seem to be taking this more and more serious in the global community. Thanks for stopping by! I hope you’re enjoying your vacation! 🙂

  3. Hi Andy,

    your articles are very interesting and we are going to Oman this October. I just booked a hotel on Mazirah and read your comments regarding the ferry – I like your pics!
    I would like to stay in contact with you, maybe for some more questions or to meet you in person for a soft drink…
    Are you on facebook? Please let me know if your are interested to contact a couple from Germany which is very curious about their journey!

  4. Inez,
    I’m happy to hear that you’ve enjoyed some of my pics! If you do wish to meet up with me, it would have to be in Muscat (not Masirah!). 🙂 I hope you have a fantastic time on Masirah Island in October. Let me know if you’re ever in the Muscat area and still want to meet up. Cheers!

  5. Dear Andy,
    Thanks for your very nice and fast reply. And yes we will be in Muscat first on our journey: arrival is on Oct 26, we will first stay in Muscat until Nov 5.
    We have planed some day-trips around Muscat with a rented car. After the 5th we will travel to the south for a week and coming back to Muscat for the last 2 days.
    We are very much looking forward to meet you and maybe your little family in Muscat and curious about your recommandations and “insider”-tips.
    Please let me know your email adress and I will come to you with more details (e.g. contact details, hotel name…)

    Warm regards from today sunny Cologne (last night about 10C),
    inez

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