Combating piracy top priority: Antony

Defence Minister A K Anonty on Monday said piracy was a matter of concern for India and combating the maritime terror was one of the topmost priorities of the government.

Updated: Feb 07, 2011, 21:04 PM IST

Bangalore: Defence Minister A K Anonty
on Monday said piracy was a matter of concern for India and
combating the maritime terror was one of the topmost
priorities of the government.

"Almost all major navies are operating in the Gulf of
Eden. Pirates have also changed their tactics," he said on the
sidelines of a function here.
"They have found that in Gulf of Eden large number of
navies are operating. They found it difficult...(to carry out)
all kinds of pirate operations. So they are now also
expanding....pushing too far to other areas.

"Now since last year, there has been a series of
incidents of pirate activities, 14 of them in this area. After
this, Indian coast Guard and Navy took a decision to
strengthen their presence in the area near Lakshadweep," he
said, leading to defeat of two serious attempts by pirates.

He said efforts would be made to deploy more assets
and concentrate on areas near Lakshwadweeep.
Besides Somali pirates, there might be some other
agents, source or force helping the pirates, the minister
said.

"This is also a worry for us. We will go to the root
of it. Combating pirates is one of the top most priorities of
the Indian Navy and Coast Guard," Antony said.

PTI