Incident Alert – Suspected Piracy Incident off the Somali Coast

Date: 07 June 2024 at 1130 UTC Position: 00° 28’N 051° 08’E

Location: Approximately 355nm west of Mogadishu, Somalia

Incident Details

UKMTO and MSCHOA have reported a suspicious approach incident in the Somali Basin. UKMTO incident 079 states that a vessel was approached 355nm west of Mogadishu, Somalia by a small craft and a mothership. The small craft containing 6 armed personnel approached to within 400m of the vessel before the Armed Security Team (AST) fired upon the craft. The craft and the mothership then abandoned their pursuit. The Company Security Officer has reported that the crew are safe.

Suspected Piracy Incident off the Somali Coast
Suspected Piracy Incident off the Somali Coast


It has been reported that the vessel involved in today’s incident is the Marshall Island-flagged bulk carrier PACIFIC HONOR. The location of this incident is close to where the cargo ship MV BASILISK was boarded by suspected pirates on 23 May and it is highly likely that a Pirate Action Group (PAG) is operating in the area. The payment of a $5million USD ransom for the release of MV ABDULLAH demonstrated the profitable nature of piracy and has likely encouraged other PAGs to put to sea. There have now been 21 confirmed cases of the hijacking of fishing vessels and commercial ships in this region since November 2023, with an estimated 4 active PAGS currently operating in this region.


It is highly likely that payment of a ransom for the release of MV ABDULLAH has encouraged other PAGs and it is likely that the frequency and scale of pirate attacks will increase across the region. PAGs are capable of operating up to 1000nm off the Somali coast and they are willing to engage vessels with small arms fire. On this occasion the embarked Armed Security Team (AST) was able to repel the PAG, demonstrating their effectiveness. Neptune P2P group recommends that vessels transiting these waters adopt the counter-piracy measures contained in BMP 5 and carry an AST to mitigate the threat posed from piracy.