Malaysian vessel hijacked by pirates two days before dinghies arrive in Maldives

Somali pirates have hijacked a Malaysian vessel west of the Maldives on Friday, according to reports from the EU’s anti-piracy force, days before a pair of dinghies containing 10 Somali nationals were discovered stranded near islands in the country’s south.

The EU’s Operation Atalanta taskforce reported that the ‘Albedo’ was hijacked 900 nautical miles east of the Somali capital of Mogadishu in the early hours of November 26. The vessel was carrying containers and was bound for Mombasa from Jebel Ali in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), according to the Vesseltracker website.

The crew consist of 23 people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Iran. The EU taskforce’s report did not say whether the ‘Albedo’ crew were being held hostage, however it noted that Somali pirates are currently holding 22 vessels with 521 hostages.

Two days (November 28) after the taking of the Albedo, a dinghy containing seven Somali nationals was brought ashore after it was discovered in Gnaviyani Atoll. The Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) discovered a bullet shell during a search of the vessel.

On November 30, a second dinghy containing three Somali nationals was discovered by a Maldivian fishing near Thinadhoo in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll.

The captain of the fishing boat Mohamed Hussain told Minivan News that one of the men had a stab wound in his neck and was seriously injured.

During an MNDF press conference yesterday, Brigadier General Zakariyya Mansoor said that Somali nationals found in Maldivian waters recently were potentially not castaways, as they may have appeared.

“They pretend to be out fishing when they lose contact with their main vessel,” he explained.

”They are actually coming from a [mothership] used for hijacking yachts and cargo ships,” said Mansoor. ”When they lose contact with the main ship they shutdown their engine to save diesel until they find land.”

Mansoor noted that many of the ‘castaways’ found in the Maldivian waters had both diesel and food, and that their physical condition was not weak.

”Although piracy decreases during this season because of rough seas, when the sea is calm, more than 400 to 500 such boats will be active in these waters,” said Mansoor.

He advised fisherman not to get too close to anonymous boats without first informing the island offices and the MNDF.

”Without doubt they are very dangerous,” he said.

Foreign Minister Dr Ahmed Shaheed said the government was working with their Somali counterparts to repatriate Somali nationals stranded in the Maldives, but added that this was difficult because of the “logistics and funds required.”

“At the moment [the arrivals] are alarming but not a direct threat,” Dr Shaheed said. “They are at the outer limits of their reach at the moment, but their reach is increasing.”

According to the ICC Commercial Crime Service, suspected Somali pirate vessels have been reported attacking vessels off the Seychelles and west of the Maldives.

“Pirates use ocean going vessels ‘mother vessels’ to sail far from Somali coast to attack and hijack passing vessels. Smaller skiffs are launched from the pirate “mother vessel” to attack passing merchant vessels, the ICC reported. “Pirates are heavily armed with automatic weapons and RPG launchers.”

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19 thoughts on “Malaysian vessel hijacked by pirates two days before dinghies arrive in Maldives”

  1. They may even hijack Maldivian fishing vessels. MNDF be on high alert at all times to save us.

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  2. Before the MNDF can protect us from these pirates, they should first practice shooting at a STATIONARY target.

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  3. Repatriation of those Somalies seems to depend upon funds being available,,I wonder who will pay the ransom money when,as probably will happen,one or more of your new fishing boats plus crews end up in Somalia..I would think those good tuna boats would be easy sold in Africa..PS there is somewhere on the internet,a video of Russian marines re-taking a hijacked Russian tanker.They eventually disarm the Somali pirates,then they handcuff them to their own vessel and blow the lot up..End of story?????.

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  4. there is very easy way to repatriate them. just establish they are infact pirates, take them out to sea and use them for target practice... that way the pirates will be repatriated to their Maker for further investigations and those aspiring pirates will think twice before becoming one. only if all countries do like this!

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  5. Unless something can be done our country could be under attack.... It is time for the US to invade Somalia as this has become a global threat. More justifiable than going after Saddam

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  6. It has come to point of shoot on sight.
    Initially the humanitarian point was ok. But now perhaps the recuperated n released guys hv spread the word that Maldives is harmless n open to exploitation.

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  7. how can the MNDF protect us, does any one know what the so called MNDF guys did on the surveillance flight they did in search for pirates when the fist dingy arrived in Fuvahmulah. as soon as the flight took off all the MNDF guys slept in the plane even some were so prepared to sleep in the flight they even took pillows with them..... they did a seven odd hour surveillance flight spending the peoples money.....
    It seems after the flight they would have said that they couldnt find any thing..... HOW can they this was their situation....... and just the very next day 7 [email protected]#@ing somalii bastards arrive in the very next atoll to addu which is gaafu dhaalu atoll....
    what a joke if these guys had done their job with out sleeping they would have found more approaching the maldives......

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  8. @MNDF

    Who are you to talk utter rubbish about our armed forces? Have you ever put YOUR life on the front line in the name of your country?

    I am sick and tired of this crap coming from armchair pirate watchers. Do you have any idea how big the Ocean around you is? And, do you have any idea what one of these small boats will look like from the air? Even then, how would you distinguish them from the hundreds of our own fishing vessels?

    Before blabbering stupid remarks, put your brain in gear. I salute the hard work that the armed forces are doing. They are the most professional and capable people we have in this country.

    Whilst the so-called 241 Committee of the Parliament sit on their arses, talking shit and farting, guess who is actually putting their lives at risk?

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  9. These Somali piracy jihadists will soon find out from their local and Afghan counterparts that the biggest prize await them in the resorts. When they hold a luxury resort hosting blue-eyed, blond haired kafir hostages, the reward will be big in this world and in paradise.

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  10. Dr Shaheed tell us the truth is it really because of the logistic costs or Somalian Govt is refusing to accept. They have no identifications and in such kind of incidences it becomes a very complicated issues and not as simple as you put it to us.

    My fear i now their number in Maldives is growing and we are not sure what will happen next. They can make contacts with their bosses and start employing parteys ho hungry for cheap money.

    They can plan hijacking resorts or culd eve occupie an inhabitted Island and ask for ransom.

    We have to get rid of these people by any means.

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  11. @ Radhun

    "Dr Shaheed tell us the truth"

    Better ask the tail of a pig to keep straight ! It is impossible.

    Next time you see the doc on TV look at his face very carefully. You will notice his face grimacing a bit.

    What happens in Lagaan? That spinner who bowls with a grunt surprises the English batsmen.

    But once they know that the grunt comes just before he releases the ball, he is reduced to nothing!

    So the doc's power to tell a lie comes from his grimace. As soon as he does that, you have to ignore what he says next, or even before that.

    To be on the safe side, better ignore him even before the interview starts!

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  12. I have little doubt that our forces are doing as much as they can to keep our waters safe from these criminals. I would hope that the vassels who sail our waters and close by also realise that military cover to combat these pirates is both expensive and very difficult to be in the right place at the right time.
    We need both aid from all countries who need their commerce protected as well as close co-operation from all other military vessels present in the Indian Ocean.
    The pirates are terrorists just as much as the land based versions, except these guys are opportunist rather than idealist. Start blowing them out of the water and they will move or stop, you will not see suicide pirates, so let's work together and eradicate this threat to us all.

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  13. MNDF should start slaughtering these Somalian chipmonks before they become to large and difficult to control. And its very easy for them to access into Maldivian islands as we are all suurounded by deep ocean and no proper barriers around us.

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