Second Cruise Ship Attacked In The Gulf Of Aden – Details Show Organized Efforts By Somali Pirates

John Konrad
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December 3, 2008

OregonLive has accounts from a passenger of the M/V Nautica:

Sunday’s attack on the nearly 600-foot long M/V Nautica — one of three ships operated by Florida-based Oceania Cruises — was the latest evidence that pirates have grown more aggressive, viewing almost any ship on the water as a potential target. But the attack lasted only five minutes and the ship with about 650 passengers and 400 crew members on board sped away quickly and was not seized.

“We didn’t think they would be cheeky enough to attack a cruise ship,” passenger Wendy Armitage of Wellington, New Zealand, said after disembarking the ship for a daylong port stop in the Omani capital of Muscat.

“It was very minor really,” she said of the attack. “But it was a surprise that they attacked us, and they did fire shots.”

The above video from the Associated Press and account from Nautica’s passengers is, however,yesterday’s news but today a second cruise ship, the M/V Athena was attacked. Australia’s Herald Sun tells us:

ALMOST 400 Australian tourists were last night caught up in the latest dramatic attempt by pirates to seize luxury liners after their cruise ship was attacked. 

During the height of the drama on the high seas, more than 29 pirate boats surrounded the MV Athena off the coast of Somalia. 

Almost 200 Australian women and 189 men are on board the ship, which is cruising through the Gulf of Aden – notorious for piracy. 

A couple on board the ship last night told of their fear as pirates made at least three attempts to board and take control of the vessel. The couple had joined other passengers for a morning quiz when they spotted boats approaching. 

“We looked outside and saw 29 small boats with up to six pirates in each boat,” one of the passengers said. “This is becoming serious. 

“We have now seen an air force Orion circling the convoy. This seemed to scare off the pirates.” 

The couple said the captain had earlier confirmed crew members had used water cannons during the night to stop pirates from boarding as the ship passed through the high-risk area of the exit of the Gulf of Aden.  Continue Reading…

This latest story is incredible indeed, check back with us soon as we attempt to confirm details of the attack.

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