Indian Navy foils piracy attempt in Gulf of Aden

Last Updated: Sunday, December 20, 2009 - 19:30

New Delhi: The Indian Navy has foiled a
piracy attempt in the Gulf of Aden by stopping a suspected
pirate skiff from taking over a merchant vessel.

"Around 1730 hours on Saturday, Indian Naval Ship (INS)
Godavari received a distress call from a Cayman Island
registered vessel ‘MV Soderling Ace’ about sighting a white
skiff approaching her. Located around two miles from the
vessel, the ship immediately launched a `Chetak` helicopter
towards it," Navy officials said here.

After reaching the area, the `Chetak` sighted the
suspected white skiff with around seven men on it and fired
warning shots, which made the skiff stop there, they added.

After closing in and boarding the skiff, Navy troops did
not find any piracy triggers such as weapons and ladders on
it.

"They must have dropped their weapons in the sea after
seeing the Navy chopper coming towards them," officials said.

After investigations, the navy released the seven
suspected pirates along with their boat as no weapons and
other suspicious items were found with them, they added.

Meanwhile, after completing its stipulated tenure in the
pirate-infested gulf, the `INS Godavari` will be heading back
to India and will be replaced by another Godavari-class guided
missile frigate `INS Ganga`, officials said.

Earlier this month, the Navy had thwarted an attempt by
pirates to hijack a US-owned tanker in the area off Somalia`s
coast. For more than a year now, the Indian Navy has deployed
its assets in the Gulf of Aden from anti-piracy operations and
has escorted over 700 merchant vessels from 45 countries there
during this period.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, December 20, 2009 - 19:30

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