Browse through our Interesting Nodes of Organizations in Cyprus A)? GHT="50">
Compact version
Today's Suggestion
Read The "Macedonian Question" (by Maria Nystazopoulou-Pelekidou)
HomeAbout HR-NetNewsWeb SitesDocumentsOnline HelpUsage InformationContact us
Friday, 27 November 2020
  Latest News (All)
     From Greece
     From Cyprus
     From Europe
     From Balkans
     From Turkey
     From USA
  World Press
  News Archives
Web Sites
  Interesting Nodes
  Special Topics
  Treaties, Conventions
  U.S. Agencies
  Cyprus Problem
  Personal NewsPaper
  Greek Fonts

Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-06-05

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Anti-piracy seminar at Posidonia exhibition
  • [02] Jet skies on the Isthmus

  • [01] Anti-piracy seminar at Posidonia exhibition

    AMNA / The persistent and growing scourge of piracy on the high seas - a problem that is costing billions of US dollars every year - was the focus of the first-ever seminar on available anti-piracy services and technology, hosted by the US embassy in Greece on Tuesday at the Posidonia international shipping exhibition, which is again taking place in Athens on June 4-8.

    In opening remarks, US Ambassador to Greece Daniel Bennett Smith noted that piracy at sea was a crime of global concern and that counter-piracy patrols – though supported by the United States – were not in themselves sufficient to guarantee ship safety.

    He pointed out that pirates – from their originally ad hoc, disorganised beginnings - are now using increasingly advanced methods and venturing further and further offshore in what is now becoming a highly developed, transnational criminal enterprise.

    While referring to cooperative efforts with other nations to investigate and prosecute these crimes and, especially, as he said "follow the money trail" that led to those financing the pirates, he noted they were too often simply let go when caught due to states' reluctance to prosecute.

    According to the US envoy, the "vast majority" of pirated ships had failed to employ best practice techniques and methods and protection services that had been shown efficient in deterring attacks and whose use will increase the safety of vessels.

    The range of solutions and services shown at the conference included a forward-looking presentation by Lockheed Martin expert Grigorios Koutsogiannis on the use of social-media and ‘cloud' type IT systems to help "enhance situational awareness" and allow ships to share information on potentially ‘suspicious' vessels in a geographical area, backed up various manned and unmanned types of aerial surveillance services available on a subscription basis or even the use of high-range, high definition electro-optical sensors attached to the masts of ships.amna

    Other technology included the ultra-loud "Long Range Acoustic Devices" (LRAD) capable of hailing and sending clear multilingual messages to vessels up to 3000 metres away, while at close range acting as an active repellent – in this way enabling ships to communicate with and distinguish between vessels that were a threat and those that were not, avoiding both risk but also an unnecessary use of force against innocent parties.

    Other speakers outlined the issues involved in hiring armed security for a vessel and one company presented a ‘maritime evidence collection kit' that could be used by crew members to collect forensic evidence that could potentially be used in prosecuting pirates caught attempting to board a vessel.

    A huge and growing problem, which many ship-owners at the seminar emphasized was showing no signs of going away, maritime piracy has a high cost in both money but also in terms of human life, injuries and trauma. According to the Oceans Beyond Piracy 2011 report, the estimated economic cost of Somali piracy was between 6.6-6.9 billion U.S. dollars, of which 80 percent burdened the shipping industry and 20 percent was spent on government action countering attacks.

    The additional costs arise from greater fuel costs and military operations, while an estimated 1.1 billion dollars was spent on security equipment and armed guards, 635 million dollars on insurance, 486-680 million dollars is spent on re-routing to avoid high-risk areas and a further 195 million dollars on greater labour costs and danger pay for seafarers.

    In the meantime, average ransoms increased 25 percent to 5 million dollars per vessel in 2011, while 160 million dollars paid for ransoms – a fraction of the total economic cost.

    Speakers noted that the number of incident had risen in 2011 and that, even though a greater number were foiled, there had been more loss of life among crews. Seven seafarers were killed as a result of pirate attacks in 2011, up from two in 2010, while 241 seafarers were taken captive and 27 vessels hijacked.amna


    [02] Jet skies on the Isthmus

    Jet skiers criss-cross the Isthmus of Corinth on Tuesday, June 5, ahead of an international round of races on the waterway, located southwest of Athens proper.
    Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
    Back to Top
    Copyright © 1995-2016 HR-Net (Hellenic Resources Network). An HRI Project.
    All Rights Reserved.

    HTML by the HR-Net Group / Hellenic Resources Institute, Inc.
    ana2html v2.01 run on Tuesday, 5 June 2012 - 18:38:12 UTC