KUALA LUMPUR: The RMN will soon have three ships in Gulf of Aden, frigate KD Lekiu, PV KD Pahang and KD Inderapura, a support ship, to protect our shipping in the area following the hijacking of two MISC vessels recently. (see NST story below)
There is also the question of whether Malaysia should embark on a rescue attempt of the kidnapped sailors. I am sure Paskal has the capabilities to mount an operation but it appears that we lack the means to support such a risky endeavor. Furthermore, any rescue attempt, which remains plausible despite the navy’s lack of support equipment ie long range helicopters and aircraft, hinges on whether or not the kidnapped sailors are being held on the hijacked vessels. If they are on land, the logistical trail would be enormous.
Honestly, I doubt whether we can do it on our own even if the sailors are held on board the ships. Perhaps this is the time, we set side our own prejudices and get the help of other navies to bring back the sailors as soon as possible. The safest way is of course to pay the pirates quickly and after our sailors and hijacked vessels are on the way home, bomb those jerks to …..
Third naval vessel deployed to Gulf of Aden
By : Hamidah Atan and V. Vasudevan
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KUALA LUMPUR: The cabinet has no objection to the Defence Ministry’s move to deploy a crack team to the Gulf of Aden following the hijacking of two Malaysian tankers recently.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the cabinet was informed of the move.
“We have no objection to it,” he told a press conference after chairing the National Economic Council meeting at the Ministry of Finance yesterday.
Bunga Melati Lima, fully laden with petrochemicals, was heading towards Singapore from Yanbu, Saudi Arabia, when it was hijacked on Friday.
It was the second MISC tanker to be hijacked in the gulf. On Aug 19, Bunga Melati Dua was hijacked.
Following the second hijacking, Malaysia International Shipping Corporation (MISC) ordered its vessels not to enter the area. Subsequently, two Royal Malaysian Navy warships were deployed to protect Malaysian merchant ships in the region.
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the government was sending another ship to join two other ships to help protect Malaysian merchant ships in the Gulf of Aden.
Najib said the KD Pahang, an offshore patrol vessel, would join two ships — the frigate, KD Lekiu and the support ship KD Inderapura, which are near Maldives to help with the operation.
Asked if the ships would cooperate with naval vessels from other countries in the Gulf of Aden, Najib said it would depend on the situation there.
“We will see what is happening there and decide if we have to work with other ships for the purpose of security in the area,” he said after receiving Hari Raya cookies from the ministers and deputy ministers wives association (Bakti) at the ministry yesterday.
The Bunga Melati Dua and Bunga Melati Lima, with 65 crew members on board, are being held hostage by pirates.
Najib said the hostages were all safe and the government and the MISC were in constant contact with the pirates.
On the RM3 million ransom demanded by the pirates, Najib said it had not been decided and the decision was up to the parties involved in the negotiations.
Asked if the government had informed the United Nations about the presence of the country’s naval vessels in the area, Najib said it had not.
“But I will touch on this in my speech at the United Nations assembly on Sept 29.”
Asked if it was time for the country to introduce universal jurisdiction laws, where those who harmed Malaysians could be brought back to the country and tried, Najib said it was difficult to enforce.
“I am not sure about the legal aspects. These people are not law-abiding people. Even if we have international laws, how are we going to enforce it?
“We have to consider the practicalities of doing so.”If you like this post, buy me an espresso. Paypal Payment