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Indian Navy warship rescues Iranian vessel hijacked by Somali pirates with fishermen, 17 crews: Official

The Indian Defence official said that the Iranian fishing vessel MV Iman with around 17 crew members was hijacked by Somali pirates.

Ajeet Kumar Edited By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 New Delhi Updated on: January 29, 2024 15:49 IST
Indian Navy rescues a vessel from Somalia Pirates in the Arabian Sea
Image Source : INDIA TV Indian Navy rescues a vessel from Somalia Pirates in the Arabian Sea

New Delhi: In a major development, Indian Defence officials on Monday (January 29) said that the Navy warship INS Sumitra has rescued fishermen hijacked by Somali pirates 700 nautical miles west of Kochi in the Arabian Sea. The Iranian fishing vessel MV Iman with around 17 crew members was hijacked by Somali pirates.

"INS Sumitra, on Anti-Piracy Operations along the East coast of Somalia & the Gulf of Aden, responded to a distress message regarding the hijacking of an  Iranian flagged Fishing Vessel (FV) Iman. The FV had been boarded by pirates & the crew taken as hostages," the Indian Navy said in a statement.

"INS Sumitra intercepted the vessel, acted in accordance with the established SOPs to coerce the pirates for the safe release of the crew along with the boat & ensured the successful release of all 17 crew members along with the boat. The FV was subsequently sanitised and released for onward transit," it added.

 
Mission deployed Indian Naval ships on anti-piracy & Maritime Security Operations in the Indian Ocean Region symbolise Indian Navy’s resolve towards safety of all vessels and seafarers at sea, it noted.

The latest attack came amid a series of attacks by Iran-backed Houthi rebels on cargo vessels in the Red Sea and other crucial business routes.

This came around ten days after the pirates captured at least six Sri Lankan fishermen with multi-day fishing trawler Lorenzo Putha-4 set from Dikowita fishing harbour. Although the Sri Lankan Navy did not comment on the development, a defence official on Sunday said that India has vowed to help in rescuing them.

Similar attempts were foiled by Indian Navy

Earlier this month, the Ministry of Defence said that the Indian Navy's Mission Deployed platforms responded swiftly to a maritime incident in the Arabian Sea involving a hijacking attempt onboard a Liberia bulk carrier. The vessel had sent a message on the UKMTO portal indicating boarding by approximately five to six unknown armed personnel on the evening of January 4.

Responding swiftly to the developing situation, the Indian Navy launched a Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) and diverted INS Chennai deployed for Maritime Security Operations to assist the vessel.
The aircraft overflew the vessel in the early morning of January 5 and established contact with the vessel, ascertaining the Safety of the crew. Naval aircraft continues to monitor movement and INS Chennai is closing the vessel to render assistance.

The overall situation is being closely monitored, in coordination with other agencies/ MNF in the area. The Indian Navy remains committed to ensuring the safety of merchant shipping in the region along with international partners and friendly foreign countries

Also Read: Indian Navy warships deployed in Arabian sea, Gulf of Aden to deter piracy, drone attacks on merchant vessels

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