Germany — Marines Seize Control of Ship From Pirates

MANAMA, Bahrain, Sept. 9, 2010 — A 24-mem­ber mar­itime raid force from the 15th Marine Expe­di­tionary Unit today board­ed and seized con­trol of an Antigua-Bar­bu­da-flagged, German–owned ves­sel from pirates who attacked and board­ed it yes­ter­day.

M/V Magellan Star
Heli­copters from USS Dubuque pro­vide aer­i­al watch as Marines from the 15th Marine Expe­di­tionary Unit’s mar­itime raid force board and seize con­trol of the Antigua and Bar­bu­da-flagged, Ger­man-owned ves­sel M/V Mag­el­lan Star, left, Sept. 9, 2010, a day after pirates attacked and board­ed the ves­sel.
U.S. Navy pho­to by Pet­ty Offi­cer 2nd Class William Farmerie
Click to enlarge

The Marines serve aboard USS Dubuque, oper­at­ing under Com­bined Task Force 151. The mis­sion secured the safe­ty of the M/V Mag­el­lan Star’s crew and returned con­trol of the ship to the civil­ian mariners.

Nine pirates are under the task force’s con­trol, pend­ing fur­ther dis­po­si­tion, offi­cials said, and the ship’s crew has not report­ed any injuries or casu­al­ties. No injuries to the mar­itime raid force were report­ed.

The Com­bined Task Force 151 flag­ship, TCG Gökçea­da, a Turk­ish frigate, was the first ship on scene, respond­ing to a dis­tress call ear­ly yes­ter­day. Two addi­tion­al war­ships assigned to the task force — USS Dubuque and USS Prince­ton — arrived in the vicin­i­ty to sup­port Gökçea­da.

“Units from the multi­na­tion­al mar­itime force, under Com­bined Task Force 151, are active­ly engaged in antipira­cy oper­a­tions,” said Rear Adm. Sinan Ertu­grul of the Turk­ish navy, task force com­man­der. “This region­al prob­lem tru­ly has glob­al impact, and we are com­plete­ly com­mit­ted to bring­ing the dis­rup­tive acts of pira­cy to an end.

“We have full sup­port of the inter­na­tion­al com­mu­ni­ty,” he con­tin­ued, “and will con­tin­ue to do every­thing pos­si­ble to bring secu­ri­ty to the Gulf of Aden and Soma­li Basin.”

Com­bined Task Force 151 is one of three task forces oper­at­ed by the 25-nation Com­bined Mar­itime Forces. It was estab­lished in Jan­u­ary 2009 to deter, dis­rupt and sup­press pira­cy, pro­tect­ing mar­itime ves­sels of all nations and secur­ing inter­na­tion­al free­dom of nav­i­ga­tion.

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)

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