EU NAVFOR destruction of pirate vessel: timeline of eventsOctober 31, 2018 - 09:14
16 Oct 18
- During the afternoon; a single skiff approached MV KSL SYDNEY in a fast and aggressive manner from the stern and opened fire at the ship’s bridge.
- The skiff approached to within five metres of the vessel’s port rear (beam). The suspected pirates had ropes and hooks ready for boarding.
- MV KSL Sydney’s armed security team were activated and engaged the suspected pirates in an exchange of small arms fire; this lasted for approximately two minutes.
- After the exchange of fire, the skiff disengaged and fled from the scene.
- EU NAVFOR resources were deployed to search for the pirate vessel. Continuous surveillance by naval and air assets was maintained in the area.
17 Oct 18
- The following morning, a suspicious whaler and a single skiff were sighted by EU NAVFOR surveillance aircraft around 167Nm off the coastline of Somalia, approximately 130Nm from the scene of the attack on MV KSL Sydney.
- In a bid to deter surveillance, the suspected pirates used mirrors to flash EU NAVFOR aircraft. Subsequently, they separated and made off at speed in different directions to avoid being tracked.
17-27 Oct 18
- During this period, EU NAVFOR maintained ongoing and continuous surveillance in the area using air and naval assets.
27 Oct 18
- The search identified the suspect whaler in an area known to have been associated with pirate activity.
- The vessel was seized and, after a thorough search, the whaler was confirmed as being the one EU NAVFOR had tracked on 17 Oct 18.
- A decision was made by EU NAVFOR to destroy the vessel to prevent it being used for pirate acts.
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