Swedish navy arrests pirates off Somali coast

Swedish naval personnel arrested seven pirates in the Gulf of Aden in the early hours of Tuesday morning, according to a statement from the Swedish Armed Forces.

Swedish navy arrests pirates off Somali coast

The pirates were apprehended by staff from the HMS Malmö as they attempted to board a Greek cargo vessel halfway between Yemen and Somalia.

HMS Malmö was ordered to respond to a distress signal sent out shortly before 1.30am by the M/V Antonis. The cargo ship’s crew said they had come under rocket-propelled grenade fire from two boats manned by pirates.

When the Swedish crew arrived at the scene the pirates were attempting to board the merchant vessel.

HMS Malmö fired warning shots at the pirates using cannons, machine guns and sniper fire in a bid to halt the attack, the Swedish military said.

When the pirates attempted to flee, the HMS Malmö took up the chase, focusing on one of the boats. After around twenty minutes, the pirates gave up and a Swedish crew was dispatched to board the pirates’ fishing boat.

Seven men were handcuffed and taken on board the Swedish corvette. The boarding crew also seized two handguns, a GPS navigator and a grappling hook.

The pirates were to be taken to Djibouti on board the HMS Malmö, where

further instructions would be issued by the European Union’s NAVFOR-Atalanta

mission command.

An agreement between the EU and Kenya stipulates that pirates arrested by EU forces are to be taken to Kenya to face trial.

Swedish naval forces began patrolling the Gulf of Aden on May 15th. The Navy’s primary task is to watch over the transportation UN food aid to Somalia, though general marine supervision is also included in the force’s mandate.

The Swedish naval force consists of the HMS Stockholm, HMS Malmö and the support vessel Trossö and is made up of 152 personnnel.

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Tie-up with Pipavav puts India on Saab’s radar

Swedish defence contractor Saab is set to invest further in India with its purchase of shares in naval defence company Pipavav, the company announced on Monday.

Tie-up with Pipavav puts India on Saab's radar

Saab signed a memorandum of understanding with the Indian company last summer, and has now purchased 250 million kronor ($38 million) worth of shares in Pipavav Offshore and Defence Engineering Ltd.

“After the investment, Saab holds approximately 3.3 per cent of the capital and votes in the company,” the Swedish defence company said in a statement.

Saab noted that while Pipavav is already well-known in the Indian naval domain, the company had set its sights on expansion, which a technical tie-up with the Swedes will allow them to do. The deal also gives market access for Saab in India.

“The investment offers a solid platform for growth for us on the Indian market and Pipavav strengthens their competitive position through Saab’s technology,” Saab India market head Lars Olof Lindgren said.

“India is an important market for us and the investment will further reinforce Saab’s strong position on the global defence and security market.”

The two companies have already worked together in an engineering group that looks at naval combat system design and architecture. Together, they will plot ahead with looking at potential technological upgrades for the Indian navy and coast guard.

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