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  India   All India  18 Mar 2024  Indian Navy seizes hijacked ship from Somali pirates

Indian Navy seizes hijacked ship from Somali pirates

THE ASIAN AGE. | PAWAN BALI
Published : Mar 18, 2024, 1:43 am IST
Updated : Mar 18, 2024, 1:43 am IST

The swift action by the Indian Navy led to the surrender of 35 pirates aboard the vessel, previously known as MV Ruen

Indian Navy Ship Kolkata successfully coerced all 35 pirates to surrender ensured safe evacuation of 17 crew members from the pirate vessel without any injury, Saturday, March 16, 2024. (PTI)
 Indian Navy Ship Kolkata successfully coerced all 35 pirates to surrender ensured safe evacuation of 17 crew members from the pirate vessel without any injury, Saturday, March 16, 2024. (PTI)

New Delhi: In a daring operation, Indian Navy elite commandos MARCOS conducted a high-stakes mission on Saturday by boarding a merchant vessel hijacked by Somali pirates in December. The vessel had since been repurposed as a mother ship for launching further hijacking attempts in the high seas.

The swift action by the Indian Navy led to the surrender of 35 pirates aboard the vessel, previously known as MV Ruen, and ensured the safe evacuation of 17 crew members who had been held hostage.

"In the last 40 hours, INS Kolkata, through coordinated efforts, successfully compelled all 35 pirates to surrender and safely evacuated 17 crew members from the pirate vessel without any injuries," stated the Indian Navy.

INS Kolkata, along with other naval assets including INS Subhadra, MQ-9B SeaGuardian drones, and P8I maritime patrol aircraft, intercepted the pirate ship Ruen approximately 1,400 nautical miles (2,600km) from the Indian Coast. Through strategic manoeuvres, the Indian Navy forced the pirate vessel to halt its operations. Additionally, Indian Navy's MARCOS were deployed via air-drop from a C-17 aircraft to execute the operation.

Further, the vessel has been thoroughly searched for the presence of illegal arms, ammunition, and contraband.

The MV Ruen, a Malta-flagged commercial vessel, was hijacked on December 15 in the Arabian Sea and diverted towards Somalia. It is suspected that the Somali pirates utilised the MV Ruen to hijack a Bangladesh-flagged cargo ship off the coast of Somalia earlier this week. This incident marked the first successful hijacking involving Somali pirates since 2017, following a crackdown by international navies in the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.

Earlier reports indicated that the pirates aboard the ex-MV Ruen had opened fire when intercepted by the Indian Navy.

"In self-defence and to counter piracy, the warship took necessary actions as per international law, using minimal force to neutralise the pirates' threat to shipping and seafarers. The pirates were urged to surrender and release the vessel and any civilians they may have been holding against their will," stated the Indian Navy in an earlier statement.

Tags: ins kolkata, indian navy, indian air force, somali pirates
Location: India, Delhi