Vittoria: Libyan Coast Guard hit in Misrata

Libyan Coast Guard vessel Vittoria and two smaller craft who were firing indiscriminately at merchant vessels in the port of Misrata, Libya, during the late evening of March 28. Vittoria was engaged and fired upon by a U.S. Navy P-3C Maritime Patrol aircraft with AGM-65 Maverick missiles; the first time that these missiles have ever been fired on a hostile vessel by a P-3C.
new equipment to update armed forces.

Underlining Libya's international rehabilitation following Col. Moammar Gadhafi's 2003 decision to abandon Libya's clandestine nuclear weapons program and renounce terrorism, The 120-foot PV30-LS fast patrol craft were built by the Zagreb-based Adria-Mar Shipbuilding yards at Kali and Bakar Bay.Deliveries began in August 2006,

The cruise missile strike against Libyan forces marked the first time that an Ohio-class guided-missile [USS Florida] submarine launched a TLAM in conflict.At least one of the five Navy ships and submarines that have launched dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles at Libyan targets from positions in the Mediterranean Sea has left the area, three defense officials said.


Scranton: Gulf of Sidra?

An Arabist is someone normally from outside the Arab World who specializes in the study of the Arabic language and Arab culture, and often Arabic literature.
An older arabist blogger is on March 30 saying:

I understand that the Qathafi garrison has chosen to defend at the eastern and southern entrances to the town of Surt (Sirte). This is wonderful news! Keep it up boys! Someone will be along to "dance" with you shortly.

Kearsarge: 1863 technology redux ... balloons

Helium-balloon transmission system was used to bridge the gap in communications from USS Kearsarge to Harriers conducting air strikes against the Libya. There are both tethered and non-tethered variants. For the strike missions, the non-tethered version is required so that the balloon can reach the appropriate altitude


Zirku: laden 105,846 dwt tanker hijacked

Zirku 105,846 dwt Kuwaiti Arab Maritime Petroleum Transport Company tanker Zirku to Singapore from Bashayer (Sudan) was 250 nautical miles South East of Salalah, a pirate gang fired machine guns and rocket propelled grenades at the 2003-built vessel in an initial 10 minute assault before backing down. They then returned with a more aggressive hit 15 minutes later, overcoming water cannons and passing over two rows of razor wire to get on board the ship. It took approximately 30 minutes for them to gain control of the vessel.

Ship Name: ZIRKU
IMO: 9237802
MMSI: 470729000
Callsign: A6E2922
Flag: United Arab Emirates

Category: Tanker
Beam: 42
Length: 244
Draught: 9.6

Nile Blend Crude Oil loaded at Marsa Bashayer, Sudan. This is a new crude oil from recently developed oil fields in Sudan. The shipment of this grade by sea only started in September 1999 and its nature and the difficulties arising during its transportation are not widely known.

Nile Blend Crude Oil is a paraffinic crude oil with a high wax content, high pour point (+30°C to +36°C) and high wax appearance temperature (+39°C and above). The wax appearance temperature (WAT) or cloud point is the temperature at which waxy solids form by precipitation in the crude oil. At or below the WAT waxy solids will precipitate or settle out onto the tank bottoms and horizontal structural members. Once wax deposition occurs heating alone will not normally place the deposited wax back into suspension within the main body of the cargo.

Beluga Nomination: Skuld and Griffin

Elected new members for a one-year period until 2006:
Niels Stolberg
Beluga Shipping GmbH, Bremen

Does my owners’ P&I policy cover piracy?

* Although P&I cover excludes war risks, the definition of “war risks” does not include piracy (Skuld Rules Appendix 1). This means that P&I risks such as crew claims, cargo damage and pollution will not be excluded on the ground that they are caused by acts of piracy.
However, some owners have piracy included in their war risks cover. For example, the Norwegian Marine Insurance Plan includes piracy as a war risk - see Norwegian Marine Insurance Plan § 15..20-22 (amended in 2010). Members who have insurance cover on Norwegian terms will therefore be covered for piracy P&I claims (such as crew compensation) by their war risks insurance provider rather than their P&I Club. Japanese war risks cover also includes piracy.

Skuld's new Kidnap & Ransom Insurance
Published 15.02.2010

SKULD, one of the world’s leading P&I Clubs, now has the ability to offer its members and clients Kidnap & Ransom cover for world-wide trade together with Griffin Underwriting.

SKULD is a P&I club with a long tradition of providing P&I insurance for shipowners and charterers. With continuing focus on providing first class service, it was natural for SKULD to provide Hull War Risk cover almost a decade ago. The current extension into K&R fulfils shipowners and charterers’ current risk exposure. The increase in piracy attacks has created a situation where owners and charterers face uncertainty in their daily operations. The risk of being attacked and illegally seized, causing disruption in trade, stress and exposure for crew and staff as well as financial insecurity, can be protected with a K&R insurance package.

Piracy attacks are continuing and vessels are seized. The insurance covers provided are uncertain for this risk and owners are left in the grey zone. To get the best protection, owners should have P&I, Hull War Risks and K&R. This package provides a certainty. SKULD can now provide all these covers: P&I, Hull War Risks including Piracy, K&R including Loss of Hire extension. This provides a comprehensive insurance package for owners and includes Skuld’s valued service in any casualty situation.

For charterers, SKULD’s Comprehensive Charterers’ Cover with K&R Loss of Hire extension, will provide the extra security for uncertain exposures in risk areas. If the charterer is liable for hire during a pirate seizure, he is covered for such a loss.

SKULD has elected to use Griffin Underwriting, a well known and experienced K&R provider, to ensure the best cover and service for members and clients. SKULD and GRIFFIN will work together to ensure close hands-on excellent service and assistance should the vessel be seized.

Kidnap & Ransom

Although the number of kidnap incidents vary from country to country depending on a variety of factors, the overall picture is one of an increasing crime. Kidnap gangs operate at various levels, from small street gangs abducting then selling the victim to a larger gang, or guerilla groups and cartels who require considerable revenue to fund their criminal activity.

Trends do occur and recent data suggests that a wider range of people are now exposed - as the most desirable targets are taking better precautions to safeguard themselves and their families from becoming victims, so less wealthy but easier targets become more attractive to the criminals as the victims of their crime.

Without the protection of insurance, kidnap and subsequent ransom demands can result in considerable personal or corporate financial loss. Griffin Underwriting offers two types of indemnity policy to protect personal and corporate assets and to provide the support that is required in the event of an incident; Individual Plus to protect families and businesses and Corporate Plus, tailored to multi-national corporations, with employees across the globe.

In the event of a claim the policy provides financial reimbursement along with advice and assistance helping to bring about the safe and timely release of the victim. Our comprehensive cover will reimburse the ransom payment along with other costs incurred whilst dealing with the kidnapping, including 100% of the consultants fees and expenses. In addition many other costs are also recoverable under our policy, including;

* Legal costs
* Medical expenses and Personal Accident cover
* Reward monies
* Salary replacement
* Interest on any loans taken out to pay the ransom
* Fees and expenses for independant services or advisors
* Rest and rehabilitation costs
* Other reasonable costs & expenses

I am writing this message to all news sites today as I am partly related to Beluga Nomination - vessel that was captured by the Somali pirates. The Shipping Company - Beluga Group - is hiding the information from press, and this is hurting both Russian, Fillipino, and international crew, Russian, Romania, Corean related cargo on board (steel), luxury yachts, etc.
The ship is captured since 24-25th of January. Last week 9-10th of February the pirates have announced their ransom - abt 8.000.000$, however the shipping company - Beluga Group - is tryign to negotiate the ransom down. According to our sources, the ransom in discussion is now $5.000.000. however even this is not being paid by the Owners.
However everyone has to consider and understand the fact, that the Owners/Beluga's risks are insured, and the fact that Beluga Group is trying to negotiate the ransom is most probably dictated by their Insurance company.
This insurance company - Danish based SKULD, at the end, will have to cover the ransom expenses back to Beluga Group. And the longer the negotion lasts, the more money this Insurance company will save, despite having this risk covered. In the meantime the crew, the cargo and all the shippers & receivers are all suffering from delays and constant credibility and contractual loss.




Triumph: launched 12 Tomahawks

As many as 12 of the weapons have been fired from the hunter–killer submarine Triumph. Triumph can carry up to 25 missiles or torpedoes.

If this is correct, the Navy will have used up to 20 per cent of its 64 Tomahawks in the opening salvos of the war, leading to fears that it is "burning through" its armoury.

The situation could become an embarrassment for the Government if the submarine were the only vessel within range of a number of targets but could not fulfil the mission.

The submarines are stealthy and can loiter offshore unseen before going to depth to fire the Tomahawks.

The Block Four variant of the missile can travel more than 850 miles, can be retargeted in flight and can loiter above a target for more than two hours. 8:01AM GMT 23 Mar 2011
12:27 GMT, March 4, 2010 Nuclear powered attack submarine (SSN) HMS Triumph sailed from Devonport Royal Dockyard today (Thursday 4 March) following a successful Long Overhaul Period (Refuel) [LOP(R)] by Babcock – the last Trafalgar class submarine refit and refuel to be undertaken. The sub was built in Barrow-in-Furness.

“On Night-1, we executed approximately 70 TLAM strikes,” Harris said. “As of today we have conducted almost 200 TLAM strikes. Tomahawk is a terrific weapon system and, as we pound military targets across Libya, we’re using it to great effect.” Vice Adm. Harry B. Harris, Jr.JFMCC


Anwaar Afriqya: Libyan rebels take tanker to Tobruk

Anwaar Afriqya The Libyan state-owned shipping line General National Maritime Transport Company (GNMTC) says that one of its tankers, the Anwaar Afriqya, has been hijacked by group of armed rebels and diverted to the port of Tobruk near the border with Egypt, where it is now berthed.

The company says that tanker is carrying a cargo of 23,800 tons of gasoline and has a crew of 22.

9275268 ANWAAR AFRIQYA 5AMU Tanker 34648 2004 119

Vessel's name: Anwaar Afriqya Last updated: Feb 09, 2011
Ex-name(s): Maersk Ramsey IMO number: 9275268
Flag: Libya Call sign: 5AMU
Port of Registry: Tripoli Summer DWT: 29999 MT
Type of vessel: Oil Tanker Built: Aug 20, 2004
Type of hull: Double Hull Owner: Libyan Product Carrier Ltd
Class Society: Lloyds Register Operator: General National Maritime Transport Company

Beluga Nomination: Niels out, no ransom money

Eight Beluga Shipping group companies have filed for protection from creditors, saying they are insolvent. This has raised concerns about how the group can ever ransom the seven surviving crew of the Beluga Nomination. The ship is at anchor in Haradhere, Somalia. 'We are in regular contact with the ship,' a Beluga spokesman said. Ransom negotiations had not yet settled the sum. It will be up to the insolvency administrator to decide whether to pay off the pirates, he said.
A US shareholder, private-equity fund Oaktree, which kicked off the inquiry with a complaint to German prosecutors, is now managing the company. Oaktree accused Stolberg of harming shareholders by hiding millions of euros from them.
Bremen, Germany - Police raided the offices on March 23, looking for evidence of possible fraud by the group's former chief executive, Niels Stolberg.

Beluga hit the headlines in January when one of its freighters, the Beluga Nomination, was seized by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean.
The crew held out for three days against the pirates. Two crew members were killed by the pirates during a naval attempt to recapture the boat and one crewman drowned in a bid to flee.
Prosecutors declined to say if police found anything during the search of Beluga's waterside offices.
German shipping is dominated by wealthy private investors who seek tax breaks by acquiring ships and chartering them to operating companies such as Beluga. After the allegations surfaced, many of the owners reclaimed their ships from Beluga last week.
The Nomination, which carried several luxury yachts, is one of a fleet of ships designed to transport bulky loads.
Beluga School

and back


Arctic Sea: forlorn 'hijackers' sentenced

Alexei Andryushin, Dmitry Bartenev, and Alexei Buleev were sentenced to 10 years, while Vitaly Slepin, and Evgeny Mironov, received seven years. All had pleaded guilty. Igor Borisov, who didn’t plead guilty, was sentenced to 12 years, said Arkhangelsk regional court spokeswoman Kseniya Solovyeva.

Arkhangelsk Regional Court will deliver sentence on the case of captured cargo ship Arctic Sea in March 22-23,
Viktor Matveev
Stateless Estonians
Eerik Niles Kross
North Korean Caper


Kearsarge: mission creep - marines rescue pilot

One of two American pilots who crashed in Libya on Monday night was in good condition on Tuesday onboard a US Navy vessel in the Mediterranean after being rescued by a Marine helicopter.

Two crew members of a US Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle ejected over northeast Libya at 10.30pm local time on Monday after their aircraft experienced a malfunction, the US military has said.

The whereabouts of one pilot is unknown, although the US military said he was 'safe'. The second was picked up by an Osprey tiltrotor helicopter, flown by the US Marines from the USS Kearsarge, an amphibious assault ship now stationed in the Mediterranean.

The Kearsarge hosts four Ospreys – which can use their twin rotors to take off like a helicopter before the rotors swivel in flight into vertical position to allow it to fly like a plane. Harrier jets have also been undertaking raids on Libya from the vessel.
Two Ospreys, complete with a crew of four and a 12 strong Marine rescue team, took part in the rescue of the F-15E pilot, who was reported to be in good condition aboard the Kearsarge on March 22. The rescue marked the first time Ospreys have flown over Libya.
The F-15E, which is based at RAF Lakenheath, was flying out of Aviano airbase in Italy.

A V-22 Osprey from Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 162 practice touch and go landings to receive their deck landing qualification aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3)

The pilots have been instructed to target command-and-control centres, airfields, supply routes, radar stations and Libya’s anti-aircraft defence batteries which have often been identified by SAS forces operating deep behind enemy lines.

The potential catastrophe demonstrates the critical role being played by the SAS.


Florida: boomer sub arrived in Med before March 3

USS Florida arrives to Naval Support Activity Souda Bay Crete for a routine port visit. Photo taken March 3, 2011.

Scranton: submarine loads in Augusta Bay Sicily

In this image released by the US Navy Visual News Service March 19, 2011 shows US NAVY file photo taken March 6, 2011, in Augusta Bay, Sicily. The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Scranton (SSN 756) pulls into Augusta Bay, Sicily, to receive supplies and personnel. Scranton is supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of responsibility.
and back
and and

Kearsarge: tiltrotor squadron returns from strike

Marine Corps 26th MEU AV-8B Harriers from Camp Lejeune’s 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, attached to amphibious assault ship Kearsarge, conducted strikes against Libyan ground forces and air defenses,

ABOARD USS KEARSARGE, at sea - A Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron, 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit's AV-8B Harrier jump jet returns to USS Kearsarge for fuel and ammunition resupply while conducting air strikes in support of Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn, March 20, 2011. Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn is the U.S. Africa Command task force established to provide operational and tactical command and control of U.S. military forces supporting the international response to the unrest in Libya and enforcement of United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1973. UNSCR 1973 authorizes all necessary measures to protect civilians in Libya under threat of attack by Qadhafi regime forces. JTF Odyssey Dawn is commanded by U.S. Navy Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, III.


Providence: Libya’s coastal air defenses

One official said US navy is planning a sea-launched missile attack from the Mediterranean against elements of Libya’s coastal air defenses. One official says the US intends to limit its involvement – at least in the initial stages – to helping protect French and other air missions by taking out Libyan air defenses.In 2003, the Providence fired missiles into Iraq from the Red Sea. Eighteen months earlier, the sub had fired some of the opening shots against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. It has 12 dedicated vertical launching system (VLS) tubes for launching Tomahawks.

about 110 Tomahawk missiles, fired from American warships and submarines and one British submarine struck 20 air-defense targets around Tripoli, the capital, and the western city of Misurata. He said the strikes were against longer-range air defense missiles as well as early warning radar sites and main command-and-control communication centers.
Vice Adm. William E. Gortney, director of the Joint Staff

Leopold 1: Belgium assigns helo frigate to Libya

Belgium will contribute a frigate to the operation to enforce a no-fly zone over Libya. BNS Leopold I, Belgian Navy , is the first M-frigate to be adapted for on- board operations with the NH90. The frigate was therefore equipped with a helicopter transport system that allows helicopters to be safely transported from the landing area on the rear deck to the hangar. The system is manufactured by Bosch-Rexroth, a Dutch company.. Belgian Navy's BNS Leopold I, was the command platform of a UN task force supporting the Lebanese Navy in monitoring commercial shipping approaching Lebanese territorial waters. The Belgian Navy took command of the force on March 1. It was the first time that the Belgian Navy headed a UN led peacekeeping operation.


Providence: other submarines deployed in Med?

The Navy has also recently deployed “a few” other submarines to the region, according to a U.S. military official who declined to provide details. WashingtonPost

Tortuga: USN in Japan evacuation/recovery

The USS Tortuga has loaded 700 Japanese security forces in Hokkaido for Akita

SS Tortuga (LSD 46) anchored early this morning in Ominato in northern Honshu, delivering 93 vehicles and 273 Japan Ground Self Defense Force ashore via Landing Craft Unit (LCU) transfer. The ship transported the soldiers and their vehicles from Tomakomai, Hokkaido, to assist with the disaster recovery efforts. The ship will also transport 5,000 bottles of water and 5,000 Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) to Misawa for further distribution to people in need.


SINAR KUDUS: Shanti's twin decker hijacked

SINAR KUDUS, Suez (Egypt) from Singapore , hijacked 320 nautical miles North East of the island of Socotra in the Somali Basin. =General Cargo / Twin decker, racked stem, bulbous bow,

PT Samudera Indonesia Tbk, the owner, was established in 1964. The core business of the Company is to provide comprehensive range of integrated cargo transportation and logistics services. With its fully integrated and diverse transportation services, the Company is capable of meeting the needs of both domestic and international customers for a door to door or one stop service. Since 1999, the Company has been publicly listed on the Jakarta Stock Exchange.

P.T Samudera Indonesia, Shanti Lasminingsih Poesposoetjipto, Chairperson, a parent/holding company with subsidiaries: SSL, ARKOM, SISM, Foremost, SSS, Panurjwan, TSJ, PNP, MTCON, MKT, Silkargo, Samudera Perdana, MPC.

In the year 2008, the Company, together with the consortium Nippon Yusen Kaisha and Fiona Trust & Holding Corp, has operated the 145,7000 cbm LNG Tanker to fulfill the need to transport LNG from the Tangguh refinary in Papua. Besides that, as an anticipation to the economic growth and the increase in the flow of containers within the province of Kalimantan Timur, the Company has been given the opportunity by PT Pelindo IV and the Mayor of Samarinda to develop and manage a container terminal located in Palaran, Samarinda – East Kalimantan. The physical development of the facility has started in the year 2008 and is hoped to be ready by the 4th quarter of 2009.

9172507 SINAR KUDUS YGFH General Cargo Ship 8911 1999
IMO: 9172507
MMSI: 525009027
Callsign: YGFH
Flag: Indonesia

Category: Cargo
Beam: 20
Length: 113
Draught: 7.4


TELP: +62-21-25676977
FAX : +622125676975


Victoria: maybe arms came from Alvand/Kharg?

The containership Victoria sailed from the Syrian port of Latakia and was en route to Alexandria, Egypt, when it was boarded in international waters 200 miles off the Israeli coast. Earlier this month, two Iranian navy vessels, the frigate Alvand and the supply ship Kharq, transited the Suez Canal from the Red Sea into the Mediterranean. Israeli army suspects two Iranian ships which docked in Syria's Latakia port two weeks ago were connected to the smuggling attempt. "The containers were loaded in Latakia after the (Iranian) vessels were there," it was said. back

Guanabara: USN Somali pre-recorded messages

When the Guanabara's distress call went out, the Bulkeley was the closest available responder. It reached the Guanabara around 9 p.m. that night.
Bulkeley was able to make contact with the tanker's crew by both radio and satellite phone, and they were able to describe the situation: There were 24 of them, from a variety of nations, against four Somalis armed with automatic rifles.
As soon as the Somalis boarded the tanker, the crew members had barricaded themselves in the control room, and so far, the Somalis hadn't been able to get in.
Bulkeley stayed in contact with the tanker crew throughout the night, as the Somalis continued to try to break in. The next morning, a Turkish warship arrived, and both the Turks and the Americans sent up helicopters.
The Bulkeley also began playing loud, pre-recorded messages in Somali urging the pirates to surrender.
Finally, around 9 a.m., the Somalis laid down their weapons, gathered at the Guanabara's bow and began waving pieces of white cloth "They were very compliant," Ensign Michael Seymour, the team leader.He said the Somalis had used a makeshift ladder made from welded scrap to board the Guanabara. The Somalis' original vessel wasn't found. The Somalis remain on the deck of the Bulkeley, Seymour said, adding that they are being fed rice and beans and kept out of the weather.


YORk: LPG tanker released - was mothership

LPG tanker York released by pirates on March 10 2011,  She was sailing empty after discharging her LPG cargo at the Shimanzi oil terminal in Mombasa,' Mwangura. With no insured cargo, ransom amount is unknown. Vessel took on board crew of another released vessel, m/v Rak Africana,  LPG tanker York pirated on October 23 2010 in 04 11 S 41 19 E, vessel was enroute Mombasa Kenya to Seyshelles.
 She was one of the four motherships used by pirates to extend their range into the Indian Ocean. Along with the chemical tanker, MV Hannibal II, MV Polar, MT Motivator and the MV Izumi, they had been called 'game changers'. The MV York was first suspected of being used as a mobile platform for pirate attacks in 2010. Prior to such large vessels being used, the atypical "mothership" was a fishing vessel hijacked for its food and water supply, and the ability to disguise the pirate's skiffs, although these vessels and dhows remain the basis of the pirate mothership fleet.   These large ships act as floating fuel stations allowing other motherships and pirated vessels to operate for longer and further. The ships', equipment and tools, and crews are placed under duress in order to be utilised to hijack other ships.
9220421 YORK  9VED8 LPG Tanker  5076  2000

Ship Type: Lpg tanker
Year Built: 2000
Length x Breadth: 100 m X 20 m
Gross Tonnage: 4807, DeadWeight: 5076 t
Speed recorded (Max / Average): 11.6 / 9 knots
Flag: Singapore [SG] 
Call Sign: 9VED8
IMO: 9220421, MMSI: 565525000

 Owned by the Greek shipping company, York Maritime and operated by Bernhard Schulte Ship Management in Germany

longchamp ransom
German Navy

Victoria: Israelis show arms seized

When Jacques Saadé moved his family to Marseilles in 1978, he told them they would stay a year while the civil war in Lebanon, their previous home, died down. Thirty years on, Mr Saadé, now 71, and his family remain based in the French port and growth at the shipping business he founded that first year is so rapid he has a new, 50-storey headquarters tower.

Jochen Döhle serves as Managing Partner of Peter Döhle Schiffahrts-KG (GmbH & Co.), Hamburg.
Most German owners, rather than finding customers and organising schedules themselves, charter vessels long-term to Maersk Line, Mediterranean Shipping Company and other container ship operators.
The closest brush with catastrophe came last May, when Hamburg shipowners and HSH Nordbank rescued CSAV, a Chilean container line that had chartered 90 ships from north German owners and almost collapsed.

Jochen Döhle, a partner in Peter Döhle Schiffsfahrt, one of the largest shipowners, rejects complaints the deal propped up an unhealthy company. “Isn’t it a positive sign that shipping has learnt from the mistake of the Lehman collapse?” he asks.

Yet few in northern Germany believe the region can absorb the tens of billions of euros in value being destroyed. Peter Döhle and Claus-Peter Offen, two of the biggest shipowners, last year applied to the federal government for loan guarantees. They withdrew after being told they would be rejected. back

Victoria, Israelis seize Saade boxship for arms

The Israeli military said that the vessel was German owned but operated by a French shipping company. The Israeli military and Foreign Ministry notified the German, Liberian and French authorities about the interception, the statement said.

-United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) on March 9 called on the CMA CGM Group (“CMA CGM”) to follow the lead of other responsible corporations and cease all business activities in or with Iran. CMA CGM, a privately owned French company and the third largest shipping container company worldwide, is listed on UANI’s Iran Business Registry (IBR).

While the world is increasingly taking steps to isolate Iran for its pursuit of an illegal nuclear weapons program, CMA CGM is instead increasing its business in Iran, stating that it would increase activities in the port of Bushehr, where Iran’s light water nuclear reactor is located, “10 times more than present.”

Since 2009, CMA CGM vessels have also been involved in two known incidents of shipping dangerous weaponry to or from Iran in violation of UN Security Council Resolutions. Most recently, in October 2010, Nigerian authorities seized 13 shipping containers carrying illegal Iranian weaponry at Lagos’ Apapa Port.

In the second case, in July 2009 the UAE seized a shipment of weapons from North Korea destined for Iran. This case is particularly troubling, because according to a diplomatic source, the shipment reportedly contained components that would be used for an Iranian test launch of a new, North Korean-supplied intermediate-range ballistic missile. The missile, reportedly the BM-25 (or Musudan), is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and reaching targets in Western Europe. CMA CGM’s business in Iran is clearly helping to prop up the Iranian regime’s dictatorship.

In 2010, the Group is rewarded with INTTRA Carrier of the Year and SONY Best Partner Carrier Award. In November, the Group signs an agreement with the family-run Turkish industrial group, YILDIRIM. The agreement enables CMA CGM to strengthen its equity base and secure the financing of its investment plan.

In 2011, Jacques R. Saadé is appointed Chief Executive Officer of CMA CGM Group.

Today, CMA CGM is the world’s third largest container shipping company and number one in France. With a fleet of 394 vessels, the Group serves over 400 ports of call. In 2009, it transported a total of 8 million TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) for total estimated revenues of 10.5 billion US dollars. With a presence on all continents and in 150 countries through its 650 agencies, the Group employs over 17,200 people worldwide, including over 4,150 in France.

Delivery Date 17/11/09
Service IRISH
Previous Name ex ES2
Built 2004
Cargo Gear 3x45t
Nominal Teus 1678
Teus 14TH 1305
Reefer Point 233 FEU
S.DWT 22506
S.Draft 10,87
L.O.A 178.5
Beam 27.6
GT 17188
NT 9038
Suez GT 50835,55
Suez NT 17944,95
Speed 21
Builder SIETAS
Propelling Engine MAN 6L23/30
Classification GL + 100 A5 CONTAINERSHIP, IW, NAV-O, SOLAS II-2 REG.19+MC AUT
Port of registry MONROVIA
Call sign A8UJ5
Bowthruster 900 kw
Imo Number 9290165
Managing Owners Peter Doehle
Operator CMA CGM

Mistral Express: Corvette Spica bars port entry

Augusta - For the time being remain outside Italian territorial waters from the ferry left from Libya on Sunday afternoon, with over a thousand and 800 people on board, and directed at Augusta. The ship, flying the flag of Morocco, had asked last night to the port authorities of the city Megarian permission berth for refueling, but corvette MM Spica P403 had radioed the captain not to enter the territorial waters .

The Interior Ministry has in fact asked the Defense Ministry to avoid the first approach to clarify the persons on board and on their intentions. The ship Mistral Express "(pictured), is playing in the early afternoon yesterday in Tripoli, carrying 1,836 immigrants, as well as 83 crew members.

According to information provided by officers of the same ferry, it would be of 1,715 Moroccans, 39 Libyans, 35 Algerians, 26 Egyptians, seven Tunisians, Malians 6, four Sudanese and Mauritanians 2. It would have been the Moroccan government to lease the ship to return home to their compatriots fleeing from Libya, but in reality it is not clear what the real intentions of the immigrants on board.

For this reason, the Coast Guard patrol boats of Augusta, Catania and Syracuse are all on alert.
The Mistral Express ferry that sailed from western Libya is now approximately 150 miles from the port of Augusta on Sicily's east coast.

It was blocked from sailing closer into Italian waters on the orders of the Italian interior ministry, officials said, while they found out who was on board and what their intentions were.

The boat was said to have been chartered by the passengers who had been working in Libya at the time of the revolt against Col Gaddafi. here

Ship Type: Passenger
Year Built: 1981
Length x Breadth: 144 m X 22 m
DeadWeight: 2295 t
Speed recorded (Max / Average): 21.7 / 21.6 knots
Flag: Morocco [MA]
Call Sign: CNA4026
IMO: 7915101, MMSI: 242582000


Mysore: Indian Destroyer leaves Malta March 13

Indian nationals from Sirte, Misurata, Benghazi and Kufrah have been pulled out. The Ministry is confident that almost all Indian nationals desirous of leaving Libya will have left. Naval vessels INS Jalashwa and INS Mysore are in the Mediterranean, just off the Libyan coast.INS Mysore (D60) is a Delhi-class guided-missile destroyer here


Providence (SSN 719): slowly tightening the noose

The nuclear-powered submarine USS PROVIDENCE (SSN 719) and Destroyer USS Mason(DDG-87) entered the Suez Canal Saturday from the Red Sea.

The officials said the warships are part of the American carrier battle group led by the USS Enterprise. U.S. military officials have ordered warships into the Mediterranean in case they are needed for Libya-related operations ranging from humanitarian assistance to possible military action.

— The Arab League endorsed a no-flight zone over Libya on March 12
Europe's leaders have clashed over the prospect of intervention in Libya, with Angela Merkel leading a campaign to block talk of air strikes and no-fly zones from David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy..

“If the international community chooses to play the role of bystander,” said Libyan official, Abdul Hafidh Ghoga, the vice chairman of the shadow government, the Libyan National Council, “we will have to defend ourselves.”

Guanabara: Japan to try pirates of Crude Carrier

Japan will try Guanabara pirates. A Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer carrying the seven-member team is scheduled to bring the four onboard at an Omani port before transporting them to Djibouti, from where a Japan Coast Guard airplane will take them to Japan. MSDF’s Kirisame (DD-104) and Yudachi (DD-103) destroyers are deployed in the Gulf of Aden The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office dispatched a total of seven prosecutors, interpreters and clerks to Oman. The Japanese prosecutors are interviewing the 24 crew members of the tanker.

It would be the first transfer of pirates to Japan since the creation of the country's antipiracy law in 2009, and legal experts are watching closely how Tokyo will deal with the captured pirates as there are no widely recognized international rules on handling them. mainichi

At approximately 3.00pm local time, Mar. 5, the oil tanker MV Guanabara reported it was under attack when it was 328 nautical miles south east of Duqm, Oman. Bulkeley, assigned to CMF’s counter-piracy mission Combined Task Force (CTF) 151 was directed to intercept Guanabara, supported by the Turkish warship TCG Giresun of NATO’s counter-piracy Task Force 508.

Following confirmation from Guanabara’s master that the suspected pirates were on board and his crew had taken refuge in the ship’s “citadel”, Bulkeley’s specialist boarding team, supported overhead by its embarked SH-60 helicopter, secured the Bahamian-flagged vessel and detained four men.
Navy Guanabara is registered in the Bahamas as owned by Peninsula Transport and managed by Mol Tank Shipmanagement Europe. The officers and crew are of varied nationalities. Distance from Duqm, Oman to Port of Djibouti is 1117 nm.

The Japanese government agreed to accept the four suspected pirates from U.S. authorities. But now, government officials are rushing through their preparations, studying when to execute an arrest warrant and how to collect evidence.

After consulting with the Justice Ministry, the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office hastily sent prosecutors to Oman, close to the attack site, on March 8.

Japan's burden, including costs, to transfer and provide interpreters is expected to be heavy.

Officials of the Japan Coast Guard, in charge of transporting and questioning the suspects, are already worried that more suspected pirates might follow.

Questioning crew members for evidence will not be easy because the tanker, on its way to China, is not scheduled to make a port call in Japan.

A trial could also pose many difficulties because both the victims and suspects are non-Japanese. The anti-piracy law provides for life imprisonment as a punishment, meaning their case could be tried by lay judges.

"Because they speak many different languages, it would be difficult for citizen judges," a senior prosecution official said.

There are even concerns that it could be impossible to determine whether the accused are adults. In a similar trial in Germany, none of the suspected pirates knew their exact age.
Asahi Shimbun Similar difficulties have been faced by South Korea's law enforcement authorities in dealing with a gang of five suspected pirates. The men were transferred to South Korea after being captured by South Korean commandos off Somalia in January.
The latest government response to the piracy issue also has brought to light the fact that Japan's legal system does not yet have clear-cut provisions on how to deal with pirates captured abroad. The handover of the pirates, if carried out, will raise such questions as the high cost of arranging such transfers.


HNLMS Tromp: helicopter crew released by Libya

Frigate HNLMS Tromp's three Dutch Marines, seized in Sirte, Libya while on a mission to evacuate a Dutch and a Swedish national, were released on March 11. The Tromp helicopter was not released.

The White House announced March 11 that it will send a government aid team into rebel-held parts of Libya


LÜBECK, Etna: SNMG1 to Libyan Coast

FGS LÜBECK f214 Place for 2 Sea Lynx Mk.88A helicopters
The design is similar to the Dutch Kortenaer class but uses a different hull and propulsion system.
MM Etna (A5326) is a naval replenishment and logistic support ship.
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said after a meeting of NATO defense ministers, the ships were to improve the awareness of what is happening in Libya.

They should also strengthen the monitoring to detect violations of the imposed by the United Nations arms embargo better. According to diplomats to the "Standing NATO Maritime Group 1", which is currently in the western Mediterranean on the road to be moved off the coast of Libya.

This NATO naval force currently consists of the German frigate "Lübeck" and Italian replenishment and logistic support ship "Etna". In addition to be a group of vessels which are specialized in the removal of mines, ordered into the central Mediterranean.

Alvand and Khard, two Iranian warships, which entered the Mediterranean last month , have passed through the Suez Canal back into the Red Sea, on March 5. The port visit by the two ships to close ally Syria was an attempt by Iran to project its clout at a time when anti-government protests sweeping the Arab world from Casablanca to Cairo are shifting the regional balance of power.

The Suez Canal Authority said last month that ships of any nationality can pass through "as long as the country is not in a state of war with Egypt."


Kearsarge ARG: completed a series of operations

Amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge and the USS Ponce departed Souda Bay, Crete. Assisted by 400 troops from Camp Lejeune’s 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, the unit undertook a series of operations to help to help evacuate Egyptians, who fled to the Tunisian border from Libya, and return them to their native country. The group is equipped with Harrier AV-8B jump-jet warplanes. Approximately 2,200 Marines and sailors with the 22nd MEU will depart mid-April for a variety of operations in support of U.S. Africa, European and Central Commands, the Marine Corps announced March 9.

FFG Philadelphia: action off Tripoli

The United States dispatched a squadron to the Mediterranean with two 44-gun frigates (President and Philadelphia). Philadelphia ran aground on an uncharted reef off Tripoli on November 1, 1803, while chasing a Tripolean ship. Unable to free itself, it was beset by gunboats from Tripoli. Believing Philadelphia to be wrecked, its captain, William Bainbridge, surrendered. Tripolean forces soon refloated Philadelphia, and refitted their prize in Tripoli.

The rest of the American squadron, commanded by its energetic commodore Edwin Preble, concentrated its efforts on recovering or destroying Philadelphia. After several attempts to cut the frigate out of harbor or burn it, a party commanded by Stephen Decatur, then a lieutenant, succeeded in burning Philadelphia on February 16, 1804.

Rak Afrikana: released - $7 million ransom maybe

Rak Africana, IMO 8200553, 1981 ransomed and released. owned by Rak Afrikana Shipping Ltd, United Arab Emirates and managed by Al Sinbad Shipping & Marine, UAE, Zambezi Shipping Agency LLC UAE. Vessel changed owners 8 times
Rak International company, which owns the ship handed over the ransom amount on March 8. The pirates, numbering about 25, were demanding a ransom of $7 million. “Negotiations were going on all these days and they might have reduced the amount little bit, Yesterday the authorities who had flown in a chartered flight dropped the bundle of notes covered with a plastic bag in the sea as per the instructions of pirates, who arrived at the spot in a speed boat. It takes minimum seven to eight hours for them to count and divide the booty. The pirates accompany the ship, carrying the crew members up to the border where a ship of the Indian Navy is anchored.
and back


RFA Argus: launched the SAS MI6 farmyard trip

SAS’s top-secret Revolutionary Warfare Wing who specialise in leading uprisings swept into a wheat farm west of the rebel stronghold of Benghazi on March 4 in two Chinook helicopters. The MI6 man – ‘the warden’ – had the job of contacting senior Libyan opposition figures.
The team is believed to have flown in from the support ship RFA Argus. RFA Argus (A135) is an aviation training ship with a secondary role of primary casualty receiving ship in the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. Italian-built, Argus was formerly the container ship MV Contender Bezant. The ship was requisitioned in 1982 for service in the Falklands War and purchased outright in 1984.

Gelibolu: Turkish frigate ferries Egyptians to Alex.

Frigate "Gelibolu" is transferring 81 Egyptians who had already left Tripoli. "Gelibou" arrived in Alexandria February 7.
Former USS Reid (FFG-30), Oliver Hazard Perry class guided-missile frigate recommissioned by Turkey G class TCG Gelibolu (F 493). They can accommodate S-70B Seahawk helicopters. The G class (Turkish: Gabya sınıfı fırkateyn(ler)) is one of the frigate classes of the Turkish Navy. They are extensively modernized versions of ex-Oliver Hazard Perry class guided-missile frigates. The "short hull" ex-Perry class frigates that are currently being operated by the Turkish Navy were modified with the ASIST landing platform system at the Istanbul Naval Shipyard, so that they can accommodate the S-70B Seahawk helicopter.
TCG Gelibolu (F-493)
Class overview
Name: G class
Operators: Turkish Navy
Completed: 8
Active: 8
General characteristics
Type: Frigate
Displacement: 4,100 long tons (4,166 t) full load
Length: 135.6 m (444 ft 11 in)
Beam: 13.7 m (44 ft 11 in)
Draught: 6.7 m (22 ft 0 in)
Propulsion: 2 × GE LM 2500 gas turbines, 41,000 hp (31 MW)
1 propeller and 2 × bow thrusters
Speed: 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)
Range: 5,000 nmi (9,300 km) at 18 kn (33 km/h)
Complement: 222 (19 officers, 203 men)
Armament: • 1 × Oto Melara 76mm DP gun
• 8 × Harpoon SSM
• 32 × SM-1 MR SAM
• 32 × ESSM launched from Mk-41 VLS (4 ESSM missiles per MK-41 cell through the use of MK25 Quadpack canisters, total of 8 cells)[1]
Aircraft carried: 1 × S-70B Seahawk or AB-212 (ASW/ASuW/EW)



Kearsarge: docked in Souda Bay, Crete

David Ignatius says in video he is sure there are many other teams in there.
Amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge and the USS Ponce arrived at Souda Bay, Crete , carrying a total of around 4000 personnel, including 1300 US Marines docked at an American base .
The ships docked in Crete two days after 400 Marines, from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, based at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, also arrived in Crete.
Meanwhile, Canadian frigate HMCS Charlottetown plans to stop at Gibraltar on Wednesday to refuel. It's still unclear what the ship will do when it arrives at the Libyan coast on March 11.

Jalashwa, Mysore: Indian Libyan ships reach Alex.

INS Jalashwa and INS Mysore will reach Alexandria on March 8.

INS Jalashwa (L41) is an amphibious transport dock. INS Mysore (D60) is a Delhi-class guided-missile destroyer. The ships are also carrying helicopters and a contingent of marine special forces back