THE HIGH level Committee on Piracy (HLCP) has resumed its work for the new calendar year, with a meeting held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, chaired by the Minister for Home Affairs and Transport, Mr. Jo√´l Morgan, on Thursday 23 January 2014.
The first meeting of the year provided an opportunity to discuss issues pertaining to maritime security and in particular Seychelles‚Äô participation at an upcoming Contact Group for Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) meeting in Paris, France, which will be chaired by the European Union Contact Group on anti-piracy.
While piracy activity has been significantly dampened by the combined operations of regional and international naval forces since it peaked in 2010, it is universally agreed that strong vigilance needs to be maintained.
As reported, a number of hijackings have been attempted in recent weeks and one pirate crew has been detained near the Gulf of Aden by the EU after a failed attack on a tanker.
‚ÄúWith the seasonal change in sea state we need to remain prepared for possible piracy attacks. Our experience has been that it is in this period that we need to be most on our guard,‚Äù said Minister Morgan.
The High Level Committee on Piracy as well reviewed a requested transfer agreement for suspected pirates, other approaches for cooperation and security related exchanges from regional nations and international partners, and discussed reviewing the terms of reference, for its own work, so as to better reflect its current engagement this in the context of maritime security in general.
Press Release: Seychelles Ministry of Home Affairs and Transport