UK Response to Piracy

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MIA
Loosewallahs trying to nick ropes in Calcutta circa 1965,big buck Sikh watchman swings lathi, loud splash from Hoogli ,end of incident.Local plod did not give a shit and were pissed off at being called out by some twat with a conscience. Maybe if a few Gurkhas went collecting ears the fad for piracy would fade away .
 
I'll be honest, the Royal Navy is doing more than one ship against piracy at this moment in time. NATO Standing Maritime Group 2 has been retasked to deal with this problem and that includes a Royal Navy Type 22.

And the problem with that article is just how useful is a slow MCMV against speed boats?

However, the announcement of the Royal Navy doing anything came too quietly and too late for any useful PR ability. The Government needs to decide much more quickly how seriously it takes the international Piracy problem. And begin to fund a Navy with enough escorts to secure the sealanes against piracy or potential aggressors.
 
As I understand it, unless PJHQ and MoD (Centre) classify this as a "current operation", not much will happen.


This is a year old now, but nothing has changed, other than getting worse;

http://www.mod.uk/NR/rdonlyres/42C010BE-9935-4C00-B62B-B8DAF3487A03/0/preface.pdf

In particular we have continued to achieve our highest priority: success on operations. We have only been able to do this by taking risk against other, lower priority goals. In particular the need to continue to operate above the overall level of concurrent operations which the Armed Forces are structured and resourced to sustain over the long term has constrained their ability to prepare for the full range of operations envisaged in security and defence planning.


Future Operations

In order to support and sustain current operations the Department has taken deliberate risk against achieving the Public Service Agreement readiness target to undertake future contingent operations. It has not been possible to maintain the high level of readiness achieved in 2005-06, and it is uncertain whether readiness will recover to the target level by April 2008. This does not mean that the Armed Forces cannot support their current operational commitments, but their ability to take on additional operations that are more than additional operations other than on a minor scale is now limited.

Note that the abysmal wording is that in the document and not mine!

It was about this time last year when 1SL wrote to us all to say that "current operations" were the 1st priority, even if it left gaps elsewhere.


That said, remember?

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1542900/First-Sea-Lord-in-threat-to-quit-over-cuts.html
 
Hansard Written Questions for 23 Oct 08 (link):

Gulf of Aden: Piracy

Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what contribution the UK is making to efforts to combat piracy in the Gulf of Aden; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The Government's stance on piracy has recently been reviewed. This has resulted in a move to a more proactive posture whereby Royal Navy (RN) units in the region will actively seek out pirates, and we have issued them with more robust guidance to deal with any pirates encountered. The RN will contribute to counter-piracy operations through three international efforts:

The UK is already engaged in efforts to combat acts of piracy off Somalia, through the Combined Task Force (CTF) 150, which has established a Maritime Security Patrol Area (MSPA) in the Gulf of Aden. CTF 150 units in this area, including RN vessels, are actively conducting operations to counter destabilising activities primarily aimed at deterring and disrupting acts of piracy;

Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, including attached RN units, will also be deploying to the region with a mandate which allows them to conduct counter-piracy operations from mid-October. NATO is considering the ways in which this mandate can be implemented including the escorting of World Food Programme shipping into port in Mogadishu; and we have also supported EU planning for a counter-piracy naval operation off the coast of Somalia, and on 14 October the EU Political and Security Committee decided to accept the offer made by the UK to provide the Operation Commander (Rear Admiral Phil Jones) and the Operation HQ (the Multinational Headquarters at Northwood). A formal decision from the EU member states to allow planning for the operation to proceed to the next stage is expected in the coming days. The UK offer is subject to sufficient forces being generated for an operation likely to begin in December.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he plans to discontinue the Royal Navy role in the Combined Task Force 150 in anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: There are currently no plans to discontinue the Royal Navy’s support to Combined Task Force (CTF) 150 countering destabilising activity including piracy in the region. Rather, the Royal Navy’s response to piracy in the region is being strengthened.

The Government’s stance on piracy has recently been reviewed. This has resulted in a move to a more proactive posture where Royal Navy (RN) units in the region will actively seek out pirates, and we have issued them with more robust guidance to deal with any pirates encountered. The RN will contribute to counter-piracy operations through three international efforts:

Continued support to CTF 150, which has established a Maritime Security Patrol Area (MSPA) in the Gulf of Aden;

Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, including attached RN units, will also be deploying to the region with a mandate which allows them to conduct counter-piracy operations from mid-October. NATO is considering the ways in which this mandate can be implemented including the escorting of World Food Programme shipping into port in Mogadishu;

and

We have also supported EU planning for a counter-piracy naval operation off the coast of Somalia, and on 14 October the EU Political and Security Committee decided to accept the offer made by the UK to provide the Operation Commander (Rear Admiral Phil Jones) and the Operation HQ (the Multinational Headquarters at Northwood). A formal decision from the EU member states to allow planning for the operation to proceed to the next stage is expected in the coming days. The UK offer is subject to sufficient forces being generated for an operation likely to begin in December.

Note the final sentence. Only time will tell.
 
(Rt Hon (?) Bob Ainsworth said:
Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, including attached RN units

SNMG2 includes one RN Unit, not plural Units as the Rt Hon gentleman implies. Unfortunately this is the second incident this year, when the foreign policy of this country would require a capable RN escort but one has not been free for tasking. When will they learn the lessons of the past?
 
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