New Anti-piracy Project Gets USD 2 Million from European Union
A new anti-piracy project with a startup grant of $2 million from the European Union has been initiated by the Eastern and Southern Africa and Indian Ocean region countries.
The MASE (Maritime Security) project has been under development since May 2010 and it was signed last week by regional economic blocs including Comesa, EAC, Igad and the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) in Mauritius.
Anti-Paracy Unite in Seychelles was established by the IOC in October.
The MASE project’s objective is to support legal and legislative capabilities to countries willing to prosecute pirates, to assist in addressing economic impact of piracy and to enable exchange of information to promote maritime security.
Since the estimated ransom payments in 2011 are higher compared to last year, the Seychelles invited the Chinese to set up an anti piracy base in the Indian Ocean island.
At least 14 ships and an estimated 262 hostages are in the control of Somali pirates, as well as an unknown number of small dhows.
Despite the increased arrests of pirates in the Indian Ocean, Kenya is still struggling to sharpen the new anti-piracy legislation.
Even though the number of arrested pirates in the Indian Ocean has increased, Kenya is still striving to enhance the new anti-piracy legislation.
World Maritime News Staff, December 28, 2011; Image: NATO