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EU considers expanding anti-piracy mission on land

By   /  December 31, 2011  /  No Comments

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Berlin (Alshahid)-The European Union is considering expanding its anti-piracy operation to include Somali beaches, Germany said Friday.

German Foreign Ministry spokesman Andreas Peschke said new rules of engagement “would only be considered to destroy pirate logistics on the beach, not deployment in the country”.

Peschke explained that a proposal will be submitted to the EU in January.

Defence ministry spokesman Stefan Paris said an EU security committee in Brussels had called on December 20 for new plans against pirates using the coastline to store equipment including weapons, fuel and speedboats.

Leading the Horn of Africa’s anti-piracy mission to the beaches would allow EU forces to destruct the pirates’ equipment on the beaches of Somalia, instead of just patrolling the seas off the coast, giving the plight a significant edge by destroying weapon arsenals, speed boats, and fuel surpluses integral to the grand scheme of piracy.

According to EUNAVFOR, although attacks off the Horn of Africa have fallen lately, pirates are still holding at least 200 hostages in Somalia or off its coast.

Since the start of Atalanta in December 2008, 2,317 merchant seamen have been held captive for an average of nearly five months, with 24 crew from the Dubai-owned Iceberg 1 missing for 19 months.

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