Somali Sea Gang Still Holds Numerous Vessels

The believed Somali sea gang striked again and this time another vessel from South Korea is held captive. It is the latest among the numerous vessels that the bandits have been holding right now. The latest in their list is this South Korean fishing boat with 43 people on board. To be specific the vessel was carrying two South Koreans, two Chinese and 39 Kenyans and was hijacked on October 9 in the Indian Ocean off the Kenyan island of Lamu. This has been the report presented by the Ministry of South Korea.

On the other side of the story, maritime observers working in Somalia with ECOTERRA Intl. had earlier confirmed that the vessel is already held off the Central Somali coast off Harardheere (Xarardheere), and a movement has been observed southward October 17.

There is argument that this is a case illegal fishing against piracy. The vessel has been noted to have been illegally entering the Somali fishing grounds with impunity over many years and then usually kept hanging out at the North Kenya banks as well as even off Malindi in order to cover the traces of the illegal activities. ECOTERRA Intl as well as the East African Seafarers Assistance Programme (SAP) has been asking the Somalis to have a due process to their illegal fishing cases and would eventually release those vessels which are proven not guilty of illegal fishing.

However, the above mentioned captivity of a vessel within Somali seas is not a single incident. There has several cases happened since 2001 that until now, there has been no clear news what is really happening in there. To sum up everything, there are already 26 foreign vessels plus one barge and at least 474 hostages or captives which includes an elderly British yachting couple and the 5 new hostages from Somaliland.

The following information that would be posted below came from the archives of ECOTERRA Intl. for the benefit of the next of kin of seafarers held hostage, who often do not get any information from the ship-owners or their governments. ECOTERRA Intl. has also posted that if your want further details you may email to The following helpline was also included:

> sms/call +254-719-603-176 / +254-733-633-733
> East Africa ILLEGAL FISHING AND DUMPING HOTLINE: +254-714-747-090 (confidentiality guaranteed) – email:
> EA Seafarers Assistance Programme : Call: +254-734-437838 or +254-714-747090 or SMS to +254-738-497979

Names and date of captivity of the vessels are listed below. Further details of the incident can be obtained by sending an email to the posted information above.

MV IZUMI (ISUMI) Seized on October 10, 2010
MT ASPHALT VENTURE Seized September 28, 2010
NASTA AL YEMEN Reportedly seized on Sept. 14, 2010
MV OLIB G Seized September 08, 2010
MV SUEZ In the early hours at 0420 UTC of AUG 02, 2010
MT MOTIVATOR At 09h44 UTC (12h44 local time) on July 4, 2010
MT GOLDEN BLESSING Seized in the morning at 03h27 UTC (06h27 loc al time) of June 28, 2010
MV ELENI P Seized May 12, 2010
MT MARIDA MARGUERITE Seized May 08, 2010
FV AL-DHAFIR Seized on May 07, 2010
FV TAI YUAN 227 Seized on May 06, 2010
MV VOC DAISY Seized in the morning of April 21, 2010
THAI FISHING FLEET Seized April 18, 2010
FV PRANTALAY 11 with a crew of 26
FV PRANTALAY 12 with a crew of 25
FV PRANTALAY 14 with a crew of 26
MV RAK AFRIKANA Seized April 11, 2010
VLCC SAMHO DREAM Seized April 02, 2010
FV NN – IRANIAN FISHING VESSEL Seized before April 02, 2010
FV JIH-CHUN TSAI 68 (???68?) Seized March 31, 2010
MV ICEBERG I Seized March 29, 2010
BB AL-NISR-AL-SAUDI Seized on March 01, 2010
FV AL-SHURA (AL-SHUVAL?) Seized after February 20, 2010
MV SOCOTRA 1 Seized December 25, 2009
YEMENI FISHING VESSEL Seized August 26, 2001

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