US Navy arrest seven suspected pirates in Gulf of Aden
The US Navy said Wednesday that one of its battleships patrolling the Gulf of Aden apprehended seven suspected pirates, marking the first such action by the newly-established multinational Combined Task Force (CTF) 151 to combat piracy, dpa reported.
The guided missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) apprehended the pirates after responding to a distress call from a nearby merchant vessel on Wednesday, according to a statement from the Manama-based US Navy 5th Fleet Command.
"At approximately 3:00 pm this afternoon, the Marshall Islands- flagged Motor Vessel Polaris sent a distress call to all ships in the area reporting that a small skiff containing seven suspected pirates had attempted a forcible boarding of their vessel using a ladder," the statement said.
According to the statement, several weapons were seized during a search operation onboard the suspected pirate vessel.
The USS Vella Gulf is the flagship of the CTF 151, which conducts counter-piracy operations in and around the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Red Sea.