An Indian Navy boarding team from the INS Sharda inspects two suspected pirate ‘motherships’ in the Gulf of Aden, May 16, 2017. Photo credit: Indian Navy
A Liberian-flagged bulk carrier came under attack by suspected pirates in the Gulf of Aden on Tuesday, but the attack was foiled thanks to the response of the Indian Navy, India’s Ministry of Defence has said.
According to a statement from the Ministry, the INS Sharda picked up a distress call from the MV Lord Mountbatten reporting an attempted attack by armed pirates while approximately 230nm south-west of Salalah, Yemen. The vessel said during the attack there were two suspicious ‘motherships’ and 7 to eight skiffs.
Upon arriving in the area, the INS Sharda detected two dhows along with eight skiffs. Three of the skiffs fled the area upon seeing the warship, but a boarding team boarded the dhows and remaining skiff, finding no evidence of fishing gear and a high-powered rifle along with a loaded magazine.
The Indian Navy confiscated the weapon and ammunition but did not apprehend any of the suspects.
The INS Sharda has been conducting counter-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden since April 6, 2017.
AIS data shows the MV Lord Mountbatten is sailing from Jebel Ali, UAE to Port Said, Egypt.
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