The Indian Ministry of Defence has said that the Indian Navy has captured 23 piracy suspects in the Gulf of Aden.
‘According to a statement issued by the Indian Ministry of Defence, the Navy vessel ‘INS Mysore’ received a distress call from Ethopian-flagged ‘Gibe’ at about 11am on Saturday December 13. ‘Gibe’ came under attack when two pirate boats closed in on her and opened fire. The crew on board ‘Gibe’ retaliated with small arms that were held onboard the vessel. ‘INS Mysore’ responded to the distress call, altering its course to head towards the location of ‘Gibe’ while also launching the ship’s integral armed helicopter. On sighting the helicopter and ‘Mysore’, the pirate boats disengaged from ‘Gibe’ and attempted to escape but were ordered to stop. The larger boat was a green coloured dhow of eight to ten metres in length. It had taken the second smaller boat (a skiff) under tow. The name of the dhow was subsequently identified as ‘Salahaddin’, Hull No 758(2). The dhow was boarded at 12.30pm by the ‘Mysore’s’ Marine Commandos and a search was carried out.23 personnel (12 Somali and 11 Yemeni) surrendered and a search of the dhow revealed a substantial cache of arms and equipment, including seven AK-47 and three other automatic rifles, along with thirteen loaded magazines; a rocket-propelled grenade-launcher along with rockets, cartridges and grenades; as many as three Outboard Motors (OBMs), a GPS Receiver, amongst others.