SOS: Laments Somalia Findings Ignore Seafarer Hardships

Thursday, February 23, 2012

SOS SaveOurSeafarers welcomes piracy conclusions of Somalia Conference but disappointed that seafarers not mentioned.

 

SOS SaveOurSeafarers welcomes the London Conference on Somalia which was attended by 55 delegations from Somalia and the international community, and willingly supports its focus on unifying the international community in its coordinated support to Somalia, in the hope that a new era of Somali politics, supported by the international community, will bring peace to Somalia.

 

SOS thanks the UK Prime Minister for urging delegates to “keep up the pressure on pirates”. SOS specifically welcomes the Conference’s acknowledgement of shipping industry and naval efforts to combat piracy and its commitment to international military efforts with robust rules of engagement. The naval forces and the shipping industry succeeded in halving the number of successful hijackings (to 25 in 2011 from 47 in 2010) despite an increase in hijack attempts (to 151 in 2011 from 127 in 2010). But both need resources, commitment and perseverance to defeat and eradicate Somali piracy as opposed to simply deterring and repressing it.

 

However SOS is disappointed that the Conference’s phrase ‘hostages in Somalia’ does not acknowledge the world’s seafarers and the hardship seafarers have to go through in order to keep world trade moving through this area, and how much they suffer, both physically and psychologically, while being held prisoners for ransom on their ships or in Somalia – and not only the seafarers but their families too. One former pirate hostage, Capt Miro Alibasic, held for 3.5 months last year on the crude oil tanker Zirku, describes his captivity and that of his crew as ‘hell on earth’.

 

SOS notes statements made during the Conference by US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and UK Prime Minister David Cameron about “creating an international task force to discourage the payment of ransoms to pirates and other groups to eliminate the profit motive”, and is deeply concerned if they mean in any way to hinder the payment of ransoms for ships and seafarers, which is currently the only way ship owners can ensure the ultimate safety of hijacked seafarers.
       
 

The conclusions from the London Conference on Somalia which specifically relate to Somali piracy may be summarised as follows:

 

  • Determination to eradicate piracy using a comprehensive approach on land and at sea.
  • Concern that hostages in Somalia are being held longer and with more use of violence.
  • Acknowledgement of the success of international military efforts.
  • Commitment to these international military efforts with robust rules of engagement and sufficient force generation.
  • Supporting local communities to tackle the underlying causes of piracy.
  • Welcoming the efforts of partners in industry against piracy – and specifically calling for a greater take-up of Best Management Practice on ships.
  • Welcoming current work on international guidance on the use of private armed security companies.
  • Determination that there will be no impunity for piracy.
  • Greater development of judicial capacity to prosecute and detain those behind piracy.
  • New arrangements to enable the transfer of suspected pirates for trial by partners across the Indian Ocean region and ultimately transfer to prisons in Puntland and Somaliland.
  • Determination to prosecute the kingpins of piracy, enhancing coordination on illegal financial flows and coordinating intelligence gathering.

 

A number of these conclusions are key points for which SOS SaveOurSeafarers has been fighting – eradication of piracy, concern for hostages, military commitment with robust rules of engagement, a determination that there will be no impunity for piracy, more prosecution and detention of pirates and those behind them.

 

SOS thanks all those who have supported it in every way since it started up almost a year ago, and who continue to support it as it works to call on governments across the world to take a firmer stance to help tackle Somali piracy so that this scourge is deterred, defeated and ultimately eradicated. SOS urges you to go to our website http://www.saveourseafarers.com  and send a letter to your government.

 

SOS SaveOurSeafarers is the biggest ever grouping of the international maritime industry with 30 organisations joined together to raise awareness of the human and economic cost of piracy using approaches to politicians and industrial leaders at the highest level. It started operation in March 2011. Over 100,000 visits to its website from 188 countries and over 31,300 letters sent to governments worldwide. Its main aims are to resolve the piracy problem off Somalia; to see piracy deterred, defeated and eradicated; to stop seafarers being tortured and murdered.
 

Maritime Reporter September 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Coast Guard Foundation to Honor USCG in Miami

The Coast Guard Foundation, a nonprofit organization committed to the education and welfare of all Coast Guard members and their families, announced today that

Maritime Broadband Opens Office in Greece

Maritime Broadband has expanded its worldwide footprint by opening an office, Maritime Broadband Hellas, in Athens, Greece. The new office addresses the growing

Renewable Energy: Schottel Tidal Turbines Ready For Use

In the last months Schottel  successfully tested its hydrokinetic turbines in Strangford Lough, Northern Ireland. The full-scale tests included 260 operating hours under realistic conditions.

Maritime Security

USCG Reopens Port Allen Post Hurricane Ana

The Coast Guard Captain of the Port reopened Port Allen in Kauai Monday morning after surveying crews deemed it  safe for transit. The maritime public is advised

Key to Somalia's Recovery

Piracy, terrorism and criminal activities originating in Somalia can only be addressed by creating a climate of security, engagement and empowerment that will encourage home grown businesses,

US & ROK Navies to Participate in Exercise Clear Horizon

The U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK) navies will participate in Exercise Clear Horizon, October 20-24, in waters south of the Korean peninsula. Clear Horizon

Government Update

Continership Alliance Expands to US Trades

The CKYHE Alliance (COSCO, "K" LINE, Yang Ming, Hanjin Shipping, and Evergreen Line) has announced they will expand their cooperation scope to U.S. Trades and CKYHE

Total CEO Killed in Moscow Runway Accident

Private jet collided with snow plow during takeoff; Total's CEO a defender of Moscow policies. Insiders Boisseau and Pouyanne long seen as potential successors.

India to Develop Iran's Chabahar Port

India will float a company to develop Iran's Chabahar Port, a government statement said on Saturday, as New Delhi aims to take advantage of a thaw in Tehran's relations with world powers.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Naval Architecture Offshore Oil Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2426 sec (4 req/sec)