The foreign offensive against Somali pirates appears to be paying off. The latest quick action by a German warship in the Gulf of Aden appears to have saved an Egyptian bulk carrier from hijack.
The ship, with 31 crew aboard, was headed to Asia when Somali pirates surrounded it and started shooting. The German warship chased them off. Only one crew member was hurt. The pirates insist they have been forced into attacking foreign shipping. “We have no choice but to take up arms and take these measures due to the illegal fishing of international ships from both the West and Asia,” said one self-proclaimed pirate. “These illegal fishing vessels have been looting our natural resources.” NATO ships have been involved in anti-piracy operations since October. Now China and India have sent their forces too. More than 100 vessels have been attacked, and nearly half of them hijacked, despite shows of force like that from the French military, when a luxury yacht was overun and soldiers chased the pirates onshore before arresting them.