Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Reputed $1.2 Million Paid to Free Spanish Hostages

It took two and a half months of captivity before the crew of the Danica White was freed, but a little over a week ago a Spanish fishing boat was captured by Somali pirates, and by Saturday the crew had been released.

On Saturday the BBC reported:

Pirates free crew of Spanish boat

Pirates have released a Spanish fishing boat and its 26 crew members seized off the coast of Somalia last week.

The Playa de Bakio, a Basque tuna fishing boat, was released along with all of its crew on Saturday, the Spanish government says.

Deputy Prime Minister Maria Teresa de la Vega said the crew were safe and on their way to “safer waters”.

She said the release had been achieved through talks. A local official told the BBC a $1.2m ransom had been paid.

This is just as AMDG predicted: for “negotiations” read “paying of ransom”.

The article continues:
- - - - - - - - -
“Five men on a speed boat came to the ship and informed the pirates that they were ready to meet their demand of ransom,” said Abdi-salam Khalif Ahmed, a local leader in the Somali port town of Haradhere.

“They then boarded the ship and handed a bag with $1.2m to the leader of the pirates.”

Ms de la Vega, who did not comment on whether a ransom had been paid, said her government had taken steps to ensure that “a similar situation does not taken place again”.

“We must put an end to maritime piracy,” she added.

Well, duh — keep on paying ransom, and you’ll get more piracy.

This isn’t rocket science.


Hat tip: AMDG

15 comments:

randian said...

Does Spain have a navy to escort commercial vessels? Do they allow Spanish ships to carry weapons to protect themselves? I wonder how the supposed "steps" will actually stop Muslim piracy.

Bilgeman said...

Hey...that's nearly 50k a head.

Uhh, HELP! I've been kidnapped by pirates!

Please deposit 50 grand in the CoV "Ransom Jar" to gain my release.

(They said if it reaches 100 grand, they'll KEEP me.)

Henrik R Clausen said...

Denmark has a nice, armed ship in the area.

And the government of Somalia (whatever exists at the moment) has actually requested that we use our capability to deliver the pirates explosives at high speed, not money.

randian said...

Denmark has a nice ship. Wonderful! Is that what Ms. de la Vega means when she says Spain's government has taken steps to ensure "a similar situation does not taken place again"? Spain has enlisted Denmark to defend it? Somehow I doubt it. Given their dhimmi tendencies, my bet is they've done absolutely nothing.

Henrik R Clausen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henrik R Clausen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henrik R Clausen said...

Actually, I don't mind negotiations, we just should make more appropriate offers. Like "What brand of missile do you prefer?" "Do you have any women and children to remove before we hammer your bases relentlessly?"

Is that what Ms. de la Vega means when she says Spain's government has taken steps to ensure "a similar situation does not taken place again"

They probably evaluated the situation carefully and deliberately picked the least controversial 'measures'. Probably also the least effective, common practice in the European Union. Then issued a press release saying "All is fine. DO NOT WORRY! Pretty please..."

I was present at a meeting in Dansk Folkeparti last August, where people discussed the Danica White situation over and over. And now we're talking sailors, people who might end up in a Somali hellhole over this - not politicians who'd just spend someone elses' money to make the problem go away. Morten Messerschmidt was the MP present at that meeting.

The question we kept hammering on was why the hot pursuit of Danica White had been abandoned. Morten, who's a good fellow, argued that we can't violate national seawaters, to which we replied "Pretty damn we can, if said nation is not effective against the pirates!"

Morten, who's a Good Guy, seems to have taken this to heart. Three days later came a press release that we should not respect national seawater limits in case of piracy, and this January the Danish parliament passed a proposal to let the navy return to its original purpose, practical defense of the civilian trading vessels.

Getting the right politicians into parliament, then telling them what we want, is the heart of democracy. It works.

[Being able to edit comments would be nice...]

straight talker said...

How very... swashbuckling
How very... 7th Century
How very... (here it comes) Islamic

Piracy, hostage-taking, and requests for ransom are merely elements of Islamic culture. Here is an opportunity to measure Multiculturalism through reductio ad absurdum. Applied rigorously, Multiculturalism will lead us to conclude that all the news of piracy, hostage-taking, and ransom-paying are perfectly the way things should be... and that we should embrace it.

Henrik R Clausen said...

This isn’t rocket science.

Which reminds me..: Rockets *are* a good solution to this problem :)

Hell_Is_Like_Newark said...

A terrific [url]bookhttp://www.amazon.com/Six-Frigates-Epic-History-Founding/dp/0393058476/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1209562377&sr=1-1[/url]
A good part of it deals with the USA's first battle with the Barbary Pirates. Bottom line: Brute force works.

I wonder if there will be a move for shippers / fishermen plying pirate infested waters to register their ships under the Stars & Stripes (like Kuwait did in the late 80's)?

costin said...

spain has received another "Coward of the Continent" medal. probably it took so long to give the money because the somalis could only speak "somalish" and took some time to tell the spanish how much money they want

Mr. Smarterthanyou said...

The cowards of Spain won their election. Now they get to muck up the world, in their own way.

Too bad Bush lacks the balls to make a public statement to that effect.

AMDG said...

For Spanish readers (automatic translation will also help). This is the beautiful story of a sailor that forced the pirates in Barbary to sign peace with Spain in the 18th C.

Flanders Fields said...

Honor among pirates? Socialists always have a way to earn money to pay such ransom:

http://www.wtopnews.com/?nid=105&sid=1388764

"Enforcing a much-neglected 1988 law, the Socialist government is getting tough about what constitutes coastal public domain _ the strip of land stretching back from the water's edge _ and telling thousands of house and apartment owners their properties do not really belong to them."
---

"This is the single biggest assault on private property we have seen in the recent history of Spain," said Jose Ortega, a spokesman for the group and lawyer for many of those affected.

He says that at best, owners are being given 60-year concessions to live on the property or operate their businesses. Others, he says, are threatened with demolition."
---

Teresita said...

Hell_is_like_newark:I wonder if there will be a move for shippers / fishermen plying pirate infested waters to register their ships under the Stars & Stripes (like Kuwait did in the late 80's)?

That won't mean anything to pirates unless a Navy gunboat escorts them too. The reason we did that in with Kuwaiti tankers in 1987 was the same reason we stick a small contingent of Army and Marine forces in South Korea today. It's a trigger for war.