Sunday, April 26, 2009

Armed guards onboard cruise ship fend off pirates

Apparently MSC has hired armed guards for their cruise ships. Israelis.
Cruise line security work is a popular job for young Israelis who have recently been discharged from mandatory army service, as it is a good chance to save money and travel.

It certainly has paid off. Their vessel Melody was attacked. And not in the Gulf of Aden, where they would have been escorted. This attack happened about 500 miles east of Somalia and 200 miles north of the Seychelles.

The Melody was on a 22-day cruise from Durban, South Africa, to Genoa, Italy, when the pirates fired "like crazy" with automatic weapons late Saturday, slightly damaging the liner, Pinto said. The pirates tried to put a ladder on board, but were unable to climb aboard, he said.

The commander said his security forces opened fire with pistols, and the ANSA news agency said the pistols had been kept in a safe under the joint control of the commander and security chief.

"When they saw our fire ... they left us and went away. They followed us for a bit but then stopped," he told Sky TG24.

I wonder if MSC has hired guards for their containerships. If not, they are probably now considering doing so.

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