New Delhi: Indian Navy, in a joint operation with Seychelles Defence Forces and Sri Lanka Navy, successfully intercepted and rescued the hijacked vessel along with six fishermen on Monday. According to the statement released by the Indian Navy, a hijacking incident was reported onboard the Sri Lankan flagged multiday fishing trawler LORENZO PUTHA 04 about 955 nm east of Mogadishu, Somalia. Three pirates had boarded and hijacked the fishing trawler on January 27.
Detailing about the operation, it said that the Indian Navy deployed INS Sharada ex Kochi PM 28 Jan and also tasked HALE Sea Guardian to locate and intercept the hijacked fishing vessel. Additionally, efficient operational coordination and Information Sharing through the Sri Lanka and Seychelles International Liaison Officers at IFC IOR, New Delhi, resulted in the interception of the hijacked fishing vessel by SCGS Topaz in Seychelles EEZ on Monday, January 29.
During the rescue operation, the Indian Navy said that at least three pirates surrendered to the Seychelles Coast Guard. and all six crew members were safe and the vessel was being escorted to Mahe, Seychelles.
Indian Navy conducts multiple rescue operations
The latest development came as the sea route has been facing multiple attacks on cargo vessels in order to show solidarity with Palestinians killed in the Israel-Hamas war. In the past two days, the Indian Navy foiled at least two attacks by Somali Pirates. On Monday, the Indian Navy warship INS Sumitra successfully rescued fishing vessel Al Naeemi and 19 crew, all Pakistani nationals, from 11 Somali pirates, along the East Coast of Somalia and the Gulf of Aden on Monday. Earlier on Monday, INS Sumitra, which was deployed on anti-piracy operations, rescued another fishing vessel FV Iman with 17 crew members on board.
On Friday, Indian Navy’s guided missile destroyer INS Visakhapatnam responded to a distress call from the British oil tanker MV Merlin Luanda after it was struck by a missile launched by the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen and provided immediate assistance to the vessel carrying 22 Indians. According to the Indian Navy, INS Visakhapatnam has deployed the warship’s Nuclear Biological Chemical Defence and Damage Control (NBCD) team along with firefighting equipment to help the crew augment the firefighting efforts onboard the distressed vessel.