Warship FS Nivôse Fire Fight with Pirates

Sunday, May 23, 2010
Photo courtesy EU NAVFOR

EU NAVFOR warship FS Nivôse returned fire after being shot at, outside of Mogadishu harbor May 20. The assault immediately stopped and none of the two merchant vessels, which were tasked to escort her, were hit. Early Thursday morning, May 20, EU NAVFOR warship FS Nivôse was approaching Mogadishu, to start an escort of MS Alpha Kirawira and Petra 1, which had just unloaded supply for AMISOM, the African Union forces in Somalia. Since gunfire was heard from the town, the commanding officer (CO) and the crew on Nivôse were extra cautious that morning.

When Nivôse was one nautical mile outside of Mogadishu the crew realized that they had been shot at from the shore outside the port. Impacts from small arms are observed in the water just 10 meters from the starboard side of the ship. Immediately the CO orders a response with a heavy machine gun from Nivôse.

After firing warning shots in the direction the fire was estimated to have come from, the assault ended. A detailed investigation of the hull later confirmed that the ship was untouched. Neither of the two merchant vessels were targets of the Somalia shootings.

Nivôse then proceeded with her duty and safely escorted the two merchant ships to Mombasa.

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