New Delhi: Despite their intense military rivalry, the Indian and Chinese Navies came together to protect a bulk carrier in the Gulf of Aden which had come under attack from pirates overnight.
Indian Navy warships INS Mumbai, a guided missile destroyer and INS Tarkash, a Russian built guided missile frigate were the first to respond to the alert sent out by the United Kingdom’s Maritime Trade Organisation (UKMTO) which was monitoring the movement of the 21,000 ton bulk carrier which was sailing between Kelang in Malaysia and the Port of Aden.
The Chinese, Italian and Pakistani Navies which were also operating in the area also responded. However, the Indian Navy‘s warships which raced to the distressed bulk carrier deployed a helicopter, which established direct communications with the crew of the ship. The crew had taken cover in the “citadel” of the ship, an enclosed secure location used if a ship comes under attack in pirate-infested waters.
Chinese special forces also moved in for the rescue operation and boarded the bulk carrier with special forces to sanitise the ship of pirates.
Neither pirates nor any skiffs were, however, detected, indicating that pirates had fled the area as security forces moved in to respond to the distress call. The Chinese Navy has thanked their Indian counterparts for the anti-piracy mission.