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Somalia pirates face Russian justice


just john

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The interview took place by telephone, I assume a mobile.

Her statement "I am old, I am 56 and my husband is 60, we dont have much time left" is a bit at odds with an early retired couple having chosen a life on the high seas.

I hope that they are eventually released and that the government does not pay out millions to the pirates.

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Perhaps they could do the same as the French and the Americans and send the army in or more to the point the SAS and get them out.

Perhaps a deterant would be to go in and raise a few of the coastal villages from where these pirates operate from and in particular destroy every single boat they can lay their hands on.

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The interview was videoed Thursday and shown on ITV and Channel 4 sunday evening, The pictures show how much weight they had lost and how skeletal Rachel Chandler was, the couple are being kept separately, the pictures were indeed harrowing, especially her state of mind, confirmed by a doctor who said ''she seems completely disorientated''. Clearly the doctor and interviewer were under invitation from the pirates as part of their continued demands for millions; but how so? How can pirates behave like this in any Sovereign country, Somalia was accepted in 1974 as a member of the Arab League and according to the UN outperforms the economies of many other countries in Africa, without some agency bringing them to book?

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[quote user="Chancer"]

Her statement "I am old, I am 56 and my husband is 60, we dont have much time left" is a bit at odds with an early retired couple having chosen a life on the high seas.

I hope that they are eventually released and that the government does not pay out millions to the pirates.

[/quote]

Being held captive for many months without the support of her husband by her side I'm prepared to accept that she may be suffering from just a little stress to have made that statement, aren't you?  It's easy to pass comments from the safety of your own home.

I'd much rather they paid millions to the pirates to gain their release than give it to the Taliban.  Then after the couple are released tell the Taliban where the money is that the UK government planned to give them.

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[quote user="Quillan"]

Perhaps they could do the same as the French and the Americans and send the army in or more to the point the SAS and get them out.

Perhaps a deterant would be to go in and raise a few of the coastal villages from where these pirates operate from and in particular destroy every single boat they can lay their hands on.

[/quote]

Q tryand keep up - there already has been a botched UK special services operation to free the yatch people.

I am very much against fishing but how would destroying poor fishermen's huts and boats help stop piracy?

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I wonder why their family hasn't come up with an offer? You would think they could raise a sum from loans etc.

Just before we moved here husband wanted to buy a boat and set sail around the world, but I said defintitely no - you go on your own! I'm so glad I did - sea sailing is b.....y frightening, even without pirates.

So we came to France instead

.I've just found this info - so it seems the govt. blocked an offer raising a sum for the ransome:

.http://www.bwsailing.com/BWS_newsandnotes_Ransom-deal-blocked-for-Somali-hostages-Paul-and-Rachel-Chandler.html

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[quote user="lucylastic"][quote user="Chancer"]

[/quote]

Being held captive for many months without the support of her husband by her side I'm prepared to accept that she may be suffering from just a little stress to have made that statement, aren't you?  It's easy to pass comments from the safety of your own home.

[/quote]

Strangely enough,  no,  I am not suffering from stress, should I be?

My next project, as and when I finally finish thsi one is to sell up in one or both countries to buy a yacht and sail away where the fancy takes me so naturally I have been watching the growth of piracy not just in Somalia but the Phillipines, Indonesia etc.

One can take steps to minimise the risk but luck will always be in play, if it were to happen to me the pirates (assuming they didnt believe me) would soon learn that there was no money to pay any ransom, no interested family members etc, just the boat as the fruit of their labours. I cant imagine nor would I want the government to get involved.

Under those hypothetical circumstances I cant see a captive being held very long nor released alive to tell the tale.

All along I have had the intuition that there is more to this kidnapping than meets the eye, it is not at all the usual modus operandi of the pirates.

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[quote user="Chancer"]

My next project, as and when I finally finish thsi one is to sell up in one or both countries to buy a yacht and sail away where the fancy takes me so naturally I have been watching the growth of piracy not just in Somalia but the Phillipines, Indonesia etc.

One can take steps to minimise the risk but luck will always be in play, if it were to happen to me the pirates (assuming they didnt believe me) would soon learn that there was no money to pay any ransom, no interested family members etc, just the boat as the fruit of their labours. I cant imagine nor would I want the government to get involved.

[/quote]

Yes but is that not what the French couple did who got taken?

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Like I said, easy to make comments from the warmth and safety of your own home/homes.

Finding myself in the same situation I like to think that I would most probably do exactly as you say you would and refuse any help from my government and dare the pirates to do their worst to me.

As I said, I like to think I would be as brave as you undoubtedly would.  I have a strong feeling though that I would be a jibbering mess and be on my knees begging for help.

You said I cant imagine nor would I want the government to get involved. Having no stress in your life it surprises me that you say you have no imagination.

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One thing on this that should not be forgotten,

The British Navy were 50 metres (yes 50 metres) from their yacht when the kidnapping took place and did absolutely nothing.

Something that the UK powers that be should consider before blocking the relatives attempts at raising a ransom.

Compare that to the Americans Special Forces who, in a previous kidnap attempt, simultaneously took out three pirates (head-shots) firing from a small inflatable.

Personally I think a few 'smart-bombs' are in order.

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Sorry, I meant that the French couple had sold up, bought a yacht and gone sailing. All their money was 'in the yacht' but the pirates didn't believe them and kept them and their friends until that is the French rescued them although unfortunately the chap was killed during the rescue (suggestion is that it was 'friendly' fire).

You can't deal with these people in the way you would with a person or group holding 'western' morals, you have to take yourself to their level. If you penalise the villages where these pirates live, like destroying the village and all the boats yet give help to the villages that don't have pirates living there the villagers will soon learn that you live a much better life if you throw the pirates out. If they have nowhere to go or operate from this type of piracy will stop after a while.

Another option is to put either marines or private security people on every boat that pass's the area and simply kill any pirates that attempt to board any vessel. When the pirates realise that its not so easy pickings hopefully they will stop.

As you pointed out this situation is well documented and there have been many international Notices to Mariners about it listing the areas of risk, you take your life in your own hands if you choose to ignore them so in a way I have have little sympathy for them as terrible as their situation is. Thats assuming they planned their trip properly of course.

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[quote user="Bugbear"]One thing on this that should not be forgotten,

The British Navy were 50 metres (yes 50 metres) from their yacht when the kidnapping took place and did absolutely nothing.

Something that the UK powers that be should consider before blocking the relatives attempts at raising a ransom.

[/quote]

Which has always puzzled me because as far as I am aware under International Maritime Law they were obliged to do something. As I said at the time even if such accuracy was impossible given sea conditions etc pumping the hull full of holes (experience has told me boats don't stay afloat for long with holes in them) or firing CS gas into the yacht might have helped rescue them. I suspect that in reality they probably had to get permission from some dump bureaucrat in the Admiralty before they could do anything by which time it was too late.

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[quote user="lucylastic"]

Like I said, easy to make comments from the warmth and safety of your own home/homes.

Having no stress in your life it surprises me that you say you have no imagination.

[/quote]

The fact that I dont feel stressed is more a reflection of my mental attitude than not having any stress (factors) in my life.

A lot of people living through my situation would be very stressed, in fact some are so stressed just at the thought of what is going on that I am compelled keep them out of the loop. My own father would have been a prime example if I hadnt waited until after his death to start the latest phase of lifes adventure.

I do not understand the link betwen stress (or lack of it) and imaginition, could you please explain?

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[quote user="Bugbear"]One thing on this that should not be forgotten,

The British Navy were 50 metres (yes 50 metres) from their yacht when the kidnapping took place and did absolutely nothing.

Something that the UK powers that be should consider before blocking the relatives attempts at raising a ransom.

[/quote]

Just to set the record straight, the naval ship that 'witnessed' the kidnapping was a Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessel, which although there were some RN personnel on board, is crewed mainly by merchant seamen and carries limited, if any, armament. RN warships, such as HMS Cumberland, have been successfully involved in several firepower incidents with Somali pirates, but they are largely forgotten.

Few incidents involving Somali pirates make the headlines. They happen frequently, including a long history of incidents on the Malacca Starits as well as Somalia. When they involve large ships, mostly carrying valuable cargo, nobody seems bothered. The lives of Filipino or Indian seamen are obviously much cheaper than those of British yachties (of course nobody should be kidnapped and the actions of pirates anywhere on the sea are totally despicable).

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The root of the problem is the completely hopeless regime (I won't call it a government) in Somalia.

This is a lawless state: no other way to describe it & has been so for years.  Any form of shipping, be it a 20m yacht or a 200m tanker, is prey to these criminals despite the best efforts of various navies.

I don't have an answer, other than pressure from the UN, but that's an organisation that historically nobody takes much notice of anyway. 

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[quote user="Chancer"][quote user="lucylastic"]

Like I said, easy to make comments from the warmth and safety of your own home/homes.

Having no stress in your life it surprises me that you say you have no imagination.

[/quote]

I do not understand the link betwen stress (or lack of it) and imaginition, could you please explain?

[/quote]

Oh Chancer I do think it is bad form to have to explain a parody. Have you not heard the saying "He who laughs last hasn't seen the joke!" ?

I chortled at yours, you evidentally missed mine.  Never mind we can still be friends.[kiss]

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I quite agree with you Gardian. The root of the problem in Somalia is the way that the fishermen were deprived of their already meagre living and turned to kidnapping in order to demand ransoms. It doesn't excuse the actions, but at least explains what started it. The comparative success of this brought in other 'criminals' - not only from Somalia - who wanted a slice of the cake.

The UN, at least its maritime arm the IMO, seems somewhat powerless. There is a European task force, in which the Royal Navy plays a leading role, that guards against pirates and escorts shipping flotillas (as well as those trying to deliver aid to Somalia). This website gives an insight into the problem and what Europe is doing about it.

http://www.eunavfor.eu/

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Oh come on Will, HMS Wave Knight has two 30mm guns and about four 7.62mm machine guns plus it has a missile capability (Vulcan Phalanx short range ship to ship) not to mention small arms. They were in an area where they know pirates operate and somebody is saying they didn't have personnel capable of using the weapons? They also carry a helicopter which they launched at the time and could have used it to follow the yacht. I mean it was a yacht so its not exactly going to be the fastest thing on the sea. Not to mention they also carry up to 25 RN personnel according to Jane's and they must have had some on board else they would not have been able to launch the helicopter. Perhaps they were scared of the pirates.
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[quote user="lucylastic"]

you know exactly what I am getting at Chancer, it has suddenly dawned on me that you are male. Enough said.

The end.

[/quote]

There speaketh a female, no doubts about that [:)]

I can assure you that I am still in the dark, us guys still dont have crystal balls, but I can now see that I misread your post, perhaps it was the punctuation, and that you weren't saying "aren't you stressed" but aren't you prepared to accept.........?"

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[quote user="Quillan"]Oh come on Will, HMS Wave Knight has two 30mm guns and about four 7.62mm machine guns plus it has a missile capability (Vulcan Phalanx short range ship to ship) not to mention small arms. They were in an area where they know pirates operate and somebody is saying they didn't have personnel capable of using the weapons? They also carry a helicopter which they launched at the time and could have used it to follow the yacht. I mean it was a yacht so its not exactly going to be the fastest thing on the sea. Not to mention they also carry up to 25 RN personnel according to Jane's and they must have had some on board else they would not have been able to launch the helicopter. Perhaps they were scared of the pirates.[/quote]

Thanks Q, saved me typing it out.

.

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Unless you or I were there it's impossible to say what happened.

Had I been in charge of Wave Knight I might have found it hard not to have a go, but we have to remember that this is still officially a merchant vessel - not part of , or under the command of - the EU protection force. For it to open fire when it was not itself being attacked itself would no doubt have caused some controversy, to say the least. It certainly goes against the official guidance which although it allows merchant vessels to carry military personnel to ward off attack, most flag states are very much against merchant ships carrying arms.

My (very unofficial) understanding was that not all the weapons were ready for use, and not all the naval personnel onboard were fully trained in using them in combat, and the decision was that to have attacked would have put the hostages in severe danger. Although they know that pirates operate in the area, the yacht was far from an expected target.

I'm not saying this action, or lack thereof, was right - hindsight is always a handy tool - just that to say 'the Navy was 50 yards away and did nothing' is a misleading statement, and to say that the Navy is scared of the pirates is beneath contempt. I hope it was not a serious comment on the situation.

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