19 September 2008 11:48 [Source: ICIS news]
By Mark Watts
LONDON (ICIS news)--Chemicals shipping organisation Intertanko on Friday urged national governments and global bodies to take action on the escalating number of violent attacks by pirates on tankers off the Somalian coast.
The organisation, which represents independent owners of oil and chemical tankers, voiced concerns over the ineffectiveness of naval forces to intercept terrorist groups following a string of kidnappings in the ?xml:namespace>
“Some of the major shipping companies are already refusing to transit in the
Intertanko, along with BIMCO, Intercargo and the International Chamber of Shipping, has joined global trade unions to formally request that the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization (IMO) back an increased naval force to protect the lives of seafarers in the region.
The coalition said ships were being attacked almost every day, often involving kidnapping and hostage taking, with pirates using automatic weapons including rocket propelled grenades.
Officials on Thursday said pirates had seized a
With the latest attacks, the tally of ships hijacked off the coast of
“While the naval forces are indeed ready to tackle the piracy problem, they need a clear signal from governments, through unequivocal rules of engagement, to do so,” said the shipping coalition.
It said continued inaction could prompt shipowners to redirect ships via the
IMO spokesman Lee Adamson said the organisation had already requested support from UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon for the extension of UN Resolution 1816, which would permit further powers for naval interception in the region.
Adopted on 2 June, the resolution permits states cooperating with
The International Maritime Bureau, the lead recording body for piracy, estimates over 1,200 Somalis and at least six major groups are involved in the attacks.
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