Somali pirate attacks show sharp fall

A Somali pirate poses in front of a Taiwanese fishing vessel - photo 23 September International security measures have led to a decline in piracy

The number of ships attacked by Somali pirates has fallen sharply this year, the International Maritime Bureau says.

Just 70 attacks were reported by ships in the first nine months of this year, compared with 233 incidents in 2011.

International intervention and new security measures are deterring pirates, the IMB adds.

But the organisation warned seafarers to remain vigilant in the waters around Somalia.

Pirate attacks in 2012

  • 125 vessels boarded
  • 24 hijacked
  • 6 crew killed
  • 448 seafarers taken hostage
  • 58 further attempted attacks

Source: IMB

Captain Pottengal Mukundan, the director of the IMB, said: "It's good news that hijackings are down, but there can be no room for complacency - these waters are still extremely high-risk and the naval presence must be maintained."

More attacks are being reported in the Gulf of Guinea, where the Nigerian navy has begun patrols. The waters off Benin and Togo are also high-risk areas.

The IMB says the attacks are often planned to steal refined oil products which can be easily sold on the open market.

Though just one attack has been reported off Somalia in the past three months, pirates there are still holding 11 vessels for ransom with 167 crew members as hostages on board.

Twenty-one more kidnapped crew members are being held on land. Some have now been detained for more than 30 months.

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Africa stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • French luxury Tea House, Mariage Freres display of tea pots Tea for tu

    France falls back in love with tea - but don't expect a British cuppa


  • Woman in swimming pool Green stuff

    The element that makes a familiar smell when mixed with urine


  • People take part in an egg-cracking contest in the village of Mokrin, 120km (75 miles) north of Belgrade, Serbia on 20 April 2014In pictures

    Images from around the world as Christians mark Easter Sunday


  • Female model's bottom in leopard skin trousers as she walks up the catwalkBum deal

    Why budget buttock ops can be bad for your health


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • ITChild's play

    It's never been easier for small businesses to get their message out to the world

Programmes

  • An aerial shot shows the Olympic Stadium, which is closed for repair works on its roof, in Rio de Janeiro March 28, 2014.Extra Time Watch

    Will Rio be ready in time to host the Olympics in 2016? The IOC president gives his verdict

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.