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Pirate Alert for Seafarers around Horn of Africa

by Andrew Mwangura, Sailors Assistance Programme on 9 Sep 2008
This is a yacht similar to the Carre D’As in sailing mode SW
A yacht similar to this one, the Carre D'as IV, was hi-jacked by Somali pirates on 03. Sept. 2008 in the Gulf of Aden and is now used to hunt for further prey.

The Venezuela-registered, French-owned, 24 m 2-mast luxury sailing yacht, an Amel Super Maramu, which was on her way from Australia to France, when she was hi-jacked in the Gulf of Aden, is not at Eyl as reported falsely. She is now being used as a decoy to lure other potential targets.


Reports directly from Somalia indicate that the hostages, the couple Jean-Yves and his wife Bernardette Delanne of French Nationality, were dropped at the Somali coast near Caluula at the tip of the Horn of Africa, from where part of the gang have dragged them into a remote hideout in the Xaabo mountains

The local people belong to the Sawaaqron sub-clan of Majerteen, who live there together with the people of the Osman Mohamud and Isse Mohamud sub-clan. All belong to the the Majerteen Clan of the Somali Darood people. The Majerteen operate the autonomous Somali province of Majertenia as their own state, called Puntland, which is at the core of the recent wave of piracy in Somali waters.

The sailing yacht might be accompanied (visibility maybe concealed from the view-side of a targeted ship) by another, small but fast boat with one or two strong outboard engines, like the one pictured below, which usually carries 5-7 heavily armed attackers (equipped with bazookas, assault guns like AK47, G3, FAL, M16 plus RPG - rocket propelled grenade launchers, as well as hand-grenades and/or mines). Such attack-boats do deliver a swift and heavy assault:


The Somali hi-jackers of the couple demand for the release a sum in excess of 1.4 million US dollar and the return of the 6 Somali prisoners, which the French Navy had taken after the negotiated and paid-for release of the French Luxury Yacht Le Ponant, a 3-master. The 6 Somalis were put on trial in Paris.

After the couple was taken ashore, the yacht was taken to sea again by the heavily armed gunmen.

While an attempt to sell the yacht at ports in the Gulf states can also not be ruled out, it is presumed that it is at present used to hunt for other ships. It might very well be used as a decoy to approach other unsuspecting yachts or simulate and signal an engine failure or other emergency at sea, whereby it then would attack any ship coming closer in order to provide assistance.

Maintain strict 24h visual and radar watch !

If you see any yacht similar to that in the picture (or the Russian fishing trawlers BURUM OCEAN or ARENA/ATHENA):

1) Get quick, clear and positive identification.
2) Go immediately on a escape route and prepare for a possible attack.
3) Alert the following stations (24/7):

a) IMB/ICC-CCS 24 Hours Anti Piracy HELPLINE Tel: + 60 3 2031 0014
IMB Piracy Reporting Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia .
Tel + 60 3 2078 5763
Fax + 60 3 2078 5769
Telex MA34199 IMBPCI
E-mail: piracy@icc-ccs.org / imbkl@icc-ccs.org

b) Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA)
Maritime Security and Safety Officer, LCDR Brett Morash USN,
brett.j.morash@hoa.centcom.mil or brett.j.morash@hoa.usafricom.mil
or phone +253-358-978.

c) Maritime Liaison Office - Cell: +973-3944-2117
Work: +973-1785-3927, Capt Tom Hastings

d) SAP - Cell: +254-721-393458
e) ECOP-marine - Cell: +254-714-747090


For forming yacht convoys:
Richard Donaldson-Alves, Net Controller. Maritime Mobile Net, SE Asia,
14,323Mhz @ 0025hrs.Zulu daily and WX @ 0055hrs.Zulu daily.

N.B.: In case you don't stand any chance to escape or to surely repulse the attack:
1) Make your distress calls with clear ID, position and number of souls on board.
2) Use standard procedures to secure the lives of people on board and the safety of your ship and cargo.
3) Don't resist orders given to you by the hi-jackers! If humble, you stand a near 100% chance to survive!

4) Most important Somali words for such a situation:

Nabad = Peace (also used as 'welcome!')
Haye ? = How are you?
Fian = Good, Fine
Ma Fian = Not Good, Not OK
Ha = Yes
Maya = No
A Posto = OK
Wayahay = Yes, Sir = WILCO, alright, strong ok
Dhib malle or Bas malle = No Problem
Tartip-Tartip = slowly-slowly, careful
Waa Kuma? = Who ?
Sabab / Mahaa ? = Why ?
Hagee = Where ?
Hagee Ku Sohotaa (written Socotaa) ? = Where to ?
Gorma = When?
Sidee ? = How ?
Gargaar = Help
Fadlan = Please
Fariiso = Sit
Suk = Wait
Ken = Bring
Biyo = Water
Unto (written Cunto) = Food
Chai = Tea
Sokor = Sugar
Ano (written Caano) = Milk (an important sign of peace)
Dawo = Medicine
Jirro = Sick
Rabsho = Problem
Ben = Lie
Run = Truth
Magaa (written Magacaa) ? = What's your name ? (be careful not to ask too many personal details!)
Lag = Money
Telfon = phone
Radio = HF/VHF radio
Motor = Engine
Shiidaal = Fuel
Patrol / Nafto = Petrol / Diesel
Hubka = Arms
Buntuq = Gun
Pastolod = Pistol
Toreey = Knife

u= in English oo - a=in English A as in all
(alert and list courtesy of SAP / ECOP-marine)

We advise all ships to stay well out of the 200nm Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Somalia, pool under escort for the passage of the narrow shipping lane between Yemen and Somalia Most dangerous area: 12 / 14 degrees north and 046 / 053 degrees east.

Coordinates of suggested corridor through the Gulf of Aden:
Waypoint: 12 15N 045E
Waypoint: 12 35N 045E
Waypoint: 13 35N 049E
Waypoint: 13 40N 049E
Waypoint: 14 10N 050E
Waypoint: 14 15N 050E
Waypoint: 14 35N 053E
Waypoint: 14 45N 053E

We advise the international community and/or individual states to abstain from any military attack against the handlers of captured vessels, since such could only lead to disasters concerning the given hostage situations and will lead to further repercussions and escalations.

We suggest better patrols for the shipping lanes and to also control all merchant ships, which often carry illegal goods (arms and military hardware, drugs, timber, cement) of high value and thereby for well informed Somali groups become easy targets and easy prey for ransom.

We strongly advise against all and any attempts to engage in underwater-archaeology and to absolutely abstain from any fishing activity by foreign ships within the 200nm EEZ until a recognized Somali state is fully operational again and legal licences, recognizable under international and national law, can be obtained and royalties paid would benefit the Somali people.

We state that the ongoing and present crisis in Somalia and thereby also the piracy can not be overcome unless the international community jointly engages in truly helping the Somali people unbiased and until the different influences and engagements by the various international players with different agenda stops and is no longer misusing Somalia as their strategic, political or economic playing field.

We are convinced that if our calls since more than 25 years and for proper support of the Somali fishing communities and industry, for assistance in true protection of the EEZ and unselfish, increased aid to the impoverished population had been heard and adhered to by the international community, especially the EU, the FAO, UNEP and other UN bodies, we would not have to deal with such an abhorrent situation with at present more than 130 seafarers as hostages and 10 ships held captive in Somalia.

Background to the Situation:
The extremely impoverished local people can do nothing against the pirates. The Puntland authorities say they are not able to curb the menace. Naval operations or military interventions most likely will risk the lives of the hostages. Usually the hostages were/are released unharmed after a ransom was/is paid. Maritime shipping companies were warned for years not to pay ransom, but especially the operators of clandestin

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