An Indian naval vessel sank a suspected pirate “mother ship” in the Gulf of Aden and chased two attack boats into the night, officials said Wednesday, as separate bands of brigands seized Thai and Iranian ships in the lawless seas.
A multinational naval force has increased patrols in the waters between the Arabian Peninsula and the Horn of Africa, where pirates have grown bolder and more violent. The force scored a rare success Tuesday when the Indian warship, operating off the coast of Oman, stopped a ship similar to a pirate vessel described in numerous bulletins. The Indian navy said the pirates fired on the INS Tabar after the officers asked to search it.
“Pirates were seen roaming on the upper deck of this vessel with guns and rocket propelled grenade launchers,” said a statement from the Indian navy. Indian forces fired back, sparking fires and a series of onboard blasts — possibly due to exploding ammunition — and destroying the ship.
They chased one of two speedboats shadowing the larger ship. One was later found abandoned. The other escaped, according to the statement.