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26 July 2012 | Kamalpreet Badasha
Worldwide pirate attacks have dropped significantly when compared with the same period last year, according to the International Maritime Bureau
The number of piracy cases dropped from 266 incidents reported between January and June 2011 to just 177 in the same six-month period this year. The improvement was attributed to a large drop in piracy by Somalia-based pirates, which fell from 163 to 69 in 2012. Somalian pirates tend to be responsible for attacks in the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and Somalia.
The IMB’s Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships report said the sharp decline in Somali attacks was a result of anti-piracy measures including patrols by international navies, use of best-management practices and an increase in the use of privately contracted armed security personnel.
However, the overall fall has been partly offset by an increase in piracy in other parts of the world with 17 cases being reported in Nigeria for 2012 compared with six for 2011. And similarly in the Gulf of Guinea there were 32 incidents this year, against 25 the previous year.
In addition, Togo experienced its first incidents of piracy with five attacks in April 2012. These west-coast attacks were attributed to Nigerian pirates.