Monday, April 7, 2008

Pirates in the News! Special Edition- La Ponant

Pirates off the coast of Somalia in the Gulf of Aden captured the three masted, thirty-person crewed yacht Le Ponant last week.
"This is a blatant act of piracy," Prime Minister Francois Fillon told reporters while on a visit to Brussels. "The Defense and Foreign ministries are mobilized to act as quickly as possible, I hope in the coming minutes or hours to try to win the freedom of these hostages."
This Yacht seems awfully fancy to me, and in discussions over the weekend I asked friends what their takes on this attack were. Obviously, in a fantastic world, we'd all love a pirate ship with several restaurants and a level of luxury reserved for the worlds finest hotels, but the general consensus by all was that, this was a dumb move by the pirates. Unlike tugs and other low-profile ships that can be easily ransomed, this high-profile quarry painted a giant bull's-eye on these pirates. And the French, historically, do not mess around (see the Rainbow Warrior, and that was just for messing with their fish).

And the French do not appear to be messing around now.

Sana'a, Yemen/Paris - The French government has deployed a unit of its elite GIGN anti-terrorism and hostage rescue force to Djibouti to prepare an assault if negotiations with Somali pirates holding the crew of a luxury yacht bring no results, French media reported Monday.

The French do not want negotiations to be too prolonged and representatives have made it clear that no matter the result, they refuse to make it generous enough to encourage piracy of French vessels.

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