UK-flagged yacht with Russian crew fired upon in Yemeni waters
UK-flagged sailing yacht MILASHKA while crossing Red Sea in southern direction early in February was caught in storm, suffering damaged sails and rigging, and running out of fuel. On Feb 4 yacht tried to find a shelter at western coast of Jazirat al Hanish al Kubra Island, Hanish Archipelago, Yemen, in position 13 43N 042 42E, referred to in navigational aids as “safe anchorage”. Yachtsmen saw on the beach derelict, obviously shelled or bombed, village, with no people in sight. Suddenly yacht was fired upon, from the shore. Hail of bullets fired by assault rifles riddled yacht, luckily, people remained unharmed, and no vital equipment was damaged. Yacht sailed away and contacted UKMTO and Combined Maritime Forces. They promised to send some Navy, but nobody came to yacht’s assistance. Yacht managed to reach Djibouiti, where she was met by Djibouti and CTF 151 Navies. After a stay in Djibouti, yacht resumed voyage, and recently, uneventfully reached Socotra Island, which though Yemeni, is considered to be a safe haven for yachts, where they can replenish supplies, such as fuel, water and food, and enjoy rest.
Yachtsmen should be very careful when crossing Red Sea, avoiding entering Yemeni waters, even in emergency, i.e. they have to plan and prepare for the trip in most thoughtful manner.
CTF 151 behaviour is kind of unexplainable. They didn’t render assistance when it was desperately needed, but more to that, in their press-release they omitted shooting, describing incident as just storm stricken yacht emergency.
WARNING, SPECIALLY FOR MARITIME NEWS EDITION AND MR. SVILEN PETROV:
Description of an incident and photos were sent to me by yacht’s skipper. I just want to warn the regretfully, already known around edition Maritime News http://www.newsmaritime.com/ and personally, Mr. Svilen Petrov, its’ Chief Editor, that if they once again use my materials and photos without crediting FleetMon or Maritime Bulletin, I’ll report their regular piracy to Google News, because that’s what they’re after – gathering hits via Google News listing. Mr. Svilen Petrov doesn’t answer requests or letters, too busy probably, because according to available information, he’s involved in shipping business other than media. Advise caution when dealing with him, maybe he’s applying his media practices in his other enterprises, too.
Here he is, an industry media pirate from Bulgaria: http://www.newsmaritime.com/contacts/