Danish Esbern Snare Catches Pirates, But Releases Them in Somalia

DENMARK’s 6,300-ton command and support ship Esbern Snare, part of NATO’s counter-piracy mission, intercepted a pirate mothership and arrested 16 suspected pirates, but later returned them to Somalia having seized their cache of AK47s and RPGs, reported Lloyds List.

Two skiffs were first spotted on the hijacked Yemeni fishing boat alerted the warship to investigate further after the NATO warship’s helicopter fired warning shots and the crew were surrounded.

The two Yemeni hostages, set to work by the crew, were released and taken onboard Esbern Snare. The Danish navy were able to seize an arms cache that included ten AK47 assault rifles, two rocket-propelled grenade launchers and ammunition.

In a statement from NATO the Esbern Snare Commander Haumann who came upon the mothership by chance, rather than targeted as many would like, said, “These ships provide the pirates with a floating base when they are operating far from the shore. They pose a great threat to the merchant shipping.”

The Esbern Snare is part of the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 of five vessels includes US, Netherlands and Turkey vessel which operate off the Horn of Africa.



Source:hksg , February 17, 2011;