India seizes armed ‘anti-piracy’ ship owned by US security firm
Tuesday, 15 October 2013 00:00
Reuters: India has detained an armed ship operated by a US maritime security company and the 35 people on board for failing to produce papers authorising it to carry weapons and ammunition in Indian waters, the coast guard said on Sunday.
Coast Guard Commandant Anand Kumar said the ship was stopped on Friday and was being held in the port of Tuticorin along with its 10 crew and 25 armed security guards until required documentation is submitted.
The crew and security guards included British, Estonian, Indian and Ukrainian nationals, Kumar said.
The southern tip of India is close to major trading routes from Asia to Europe. Many cargo ships now travel with armed guards to deter pirates. Sri Lanka, close to Tuticorin, is a popular boarding point for private armed guards.
Pirate attacks cost billions of dollars every year - as much as $5.7-6.1 billion in 2012, according to The Oceans Beyond Piracy advocacy group.