Photo via Navy.mil
It has been a bad week for pirates in the Gulf of Aden. Yesterday, the USS Vella gulf apprehended 9 suspected pirates following a hijacking attempt on the Indian-flagged M/V Premdivya. This is the second apprehension of suspected pirates by the Vella Gulf in just 24 hrs. Wednesday’s capture of 7 suspected pirates marked the first capture by the multinational task force CTF-151.
According to reports, the Premdivya sent out a distress call to all ships in the area reported that she had been fired upon by a small skiff, with the supsected pirates attempting to board the vessel. A helicopter from the Vella Gulf responded and intercepted the small skiff with 9 people aboard.
The suspected pirates will eventually be transferred the USNS Lewis and Clark equipped with a temporary holding facility while the incident is further investigated.
In recent days, a total of six ships have been attacked but all managed to escape. According to experts, a slightly lower rate of successful pirate attacks since the start of 2009 is due to a combination of weather conditions and increased navy surveillance.