Combined Maritime Forces Alert to Mariners

Following a series of attacks off the eastern coast of Somalia, Combined Maritime Forces issued an updated special maritime advisory message.

The message highlights several recent attacks that occurred hundreds of miles off the Somali coast and states that merchant mariners should be increasingly vigilant when operating in those waters. “We continue to highlight the importance of preparation by the merchant mariners and the maritime industry in this message,” said Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander, Combined Maritime Forces. “We synchronize the efforts of the naval forces deployed to the region. However as we have often stated, international naval forces alone will not be able to solve the problem of piracy at sea. “Piracy is a problem that starts ashore. “While the majority of attacks during 2008 and early 2009 took place in the Gulf of Aden, these recent attacks off the eastern coast of Somalia are not unprecedented. An attack on the large crude tanker Sirius Star in November 2008 occurred more than 450 nautical miles off the southeast coast of Somalia.

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