In what appears to be the fashionable ‘take-one-give-one’ cycle Somali pirates hijacked the general cargo ship Ems River the day before releasing the chemical product tanker Marida Marguerite.
In the early hours of 27 December, the Ems River was pirated approximately 175 nautical miles North East of the port of Salalah, Oman.
The 5,200 tonne general cargo ship, which is Antigua/Barbuda flagged and German owned, was on her way to San Nicolas, Greece from Jebel Ali in the UAE at the time of the attack. She has a crew of eight, one Romanian, seven Filipinos, and is carrying a cargo of petroleum coke. The pirated vessel MT MOTIVATOR was in the vicinity of Ems River throughout the attack which further enforces the current pirate modus operandi of the use of motherships.
At 1330Z the next day, 28 December 2010, the Marida Marguerite was released from pirate control.
The vessel which is Marshall Island flagged and German owned, was pirated on the morning of 8 May 2010. With a deadweight of 13168 tonnes and a crew of 22, 19 Indian, one Ukrainian and two Bangladeshi, she was bound for Antwerp, Holland, when taken by pirates approximately 120 nautical miles South of Salalah, Oman.
The release brought the number of hostage held by pirates from 609 to 587, which includes those forced to operate Motivator, and the number vessels to 25.
In the early hours of 4 July, the chemical and oil product tanker Motivator reported it was under small arms fire from a pirate attack in the northern Bab Al Mandeb area in the southern Red Sea. After notification of this attack, attempts were made to make contact with the Motivator but to no avail. The hijack was confirmed early on 5 July.
Motivator, deadweight 13,065 tonnes with a crew of 18 Filipino nationals on board, is a Marshall Islands Flagged chemical products tanker loaded with lubricants oil.