Screenshot 2024-03-16 at 11.47.52 am.png

A Bangladesh-flagged bulk carrier Abdullah with 23 crew was boarded in the Indian Ocean Tuesday by suspected Somali pirates some 600 nautical miles east of Mogadishu.The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) said it had received reports from the “company security officer” of multiple armed persons boarding and taking control of the ship. In a separate note, maritime security specialist Ambrey said the operation was carried out from one small and one large craft. One of the hostages, Atiq Ullah Khan – the chief officer of the ABDULLAH, was able to send an audio message to his wife.

According to Bangladeshi media, the pirates are under orders to kill the crew members one by one if they are not paid. The message also said that the sooner the pirates got the payment, the sooner they would release the hostages.The chief officer was also able to tell his mother they were all locked in a cabin surrounded by 50 pirates and on their way to Somalia, some two and a half days away.

The 2015-built supramax of SR Shipping and part of the Kabir Steel Re-Rolling Mills (KSRM) Group in Bangladesh was carrying coal from Maputo, Mozambique, to Hamriya, UAE.Ambrey had previously observed the ship altering course to the southeast and increasing speed, which was later on reduced to one knot and also advised other ships to “stay well clear of this position”.

The most recent UKMTO update said that the crew are unharmed and that there are 22 unauthorised armed persons onboard.Piracy was rampant off Somalia for a four-year period from 2008, but then it went dormant for about five years.

Earlier this month, the Maritime Security Centre Horn of Africa (MSCHOA) reported an unnamed hijacked fishing dhow departing Somalia with 11 armed persons onboard. In January, Liberian-flagged capesize Lila Norfolk was boarded by armed men some 460 nautical miles off Somalia but subsequently rescued by the Indian Navy.

Source : By : Adis Ajdin /Splash 247/Maasmond Maritime