UN proposes Somalia pirate court

2011-01-25 11:27
New York - Somali pirates are expanding their attacks and costing the world more than $7bn a year, according to a UN study released on Monday that calls for stepped up security and a pirate court.

The report by former French minister Jack Lang suggests establishing a court under Somali jurisdiction but based in a foreign country in order to address the phenomenon, which has grown in recent years.

It said the international naval force in the Indian Ocean should patrol closer to the pirates' coastal hideouts and that economic incentives should be offered to Somali youth to dissuade them from joining the buccaneers.

Somali pirates have captured nearly 2 000 people and been paid ransoms of up to $9.5m for seized tankers since 2008. As of December 31, 612 people and 26 ships were still being held, according to UN figures.

"The battle is being won by the pirates," Lang told reporters.

"They are going further out into the Indian Ocean and with more high-tech equipment to help them."

Extreme urgency

The pirates are even taking counterfeit bank note detectors out to sea to check ransoms, the report said.

Lang's report, to be debated by the UN Security Council on Tuesday, said pirate raids are now costing at least $7bn a year, a sum that includes the military force, lost merchandise, ransom fees and higher insurance.

"If the international community does not act with extreme urgency, the pirate economy off the coast of Somalia will continue to prosper until it reaches the point of no return," the report said.

Dozens of warships from the European Union, the United States, Russia, China, Saudi Arabia, Japan, South Korea and other countries patrol the Indian Ocean shipping lanes off Somalia. Even Iran takes part.

Some 780 pirates are currently being held in 13 countries, but nine out of 10 pirates caught at sea by the international fleet are freed almost straight away because there is nowhere to try them.

Lang said all countries should adopt legislation so they can handle pirates who have committed acts outside their territory, in addition to establishing the extra-territorial Somali court.

Tanzania has indicated it would be ready to accept such a court, Lang's entourage said. It could perhaps use the same facilities as the UN-backed international court on Rwanda, which sits in Arusha.

Greater efforts


A similar system was used for the trial of the Libyan bombers of the Pan-Am jet blown up over the Scottish town of Lockerbie in 1988. Under a deal with Libya, the Scottish court sat in the Netherlands.

Lang's report said the cost of the court, new prisons and other measures to strengthen Somalia's judicial system would be about $25m, a tiny fraction of today's piracy losses.

Puntland and Somaliland, the two regions in lawless Somalia where most pirates are based, would need major economic aid to encourage young people not to join what Lang called the pirate "mafia."

The report said the international flotilla should operate "as close as possible" to the Somali coast in order to intercept the pirates' mother ships, which can only dock in a few known ports to get supplies.

It also said greater efforts must be made to make shipping companies take anti-piracy precautions suggested by the International Maritime Organisation, including setting up barbed wire command centers on ships in risky areas, special crew training and enhanced communication systems.

Read more on:    un  |  somalia  |  east africa  |  somali pirates
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Sport
 

BMW drift battle: M235i vs. speedway bike

Watch this insane drift contest with four-times dirt-track World champion Karl Maier riding a speedway bike against a BMW M235i.

 
 

Men24.com

Want to start talking dirty?
Everyday struggles of naturally skinny guys
And this year's Miss Bumbum title goes to...
How to maintain your mo, bro

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

20% off ALL TV Series

Choose from 1000’s of the hottest TV Series . While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is a strong focus on social interaction and connecting with your friends. You may have the need to expand and connect with a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.