The Operation Commander of the EU Naval Force, Rear Admiral Bob Tarrant, has issued a renewed warning that Somali pirates are still determined to get out to sea and, if presented with an easy target, will attack. “I am very concerned that seafarers and nations will lower their guard and support for counter piracy operations in the belief that the piracy threat is over. It is not; it is merely contained. We should remember that at its height in January 2011, 32 ships were pirated by Somali pirates and 736 hostages were held. It is crucial that we remain vigilant or the number of attacks will once again rise.”
The Admiral’s warning comes days after EU Naval Force warship ESPS Rayo located a skiff with six men on board 320 nautical miles off the Somali coast. It is highly unusual to see these small, open top boats so far out to sea, so a team from Rayo went across to investigate.