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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

U.S. ships must post guards if sailing off Somalia

Source: Reuters
By Jane Sutton
FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida (Reuters) – The U.S. Coast Guard will require U.S.-flagged ships sailing around the Horn of Africa to post guards and ship owners to submit anti-piracy security plans for approval, a Coast Guard official said on Tuesday.
The new requirements, which respond to a surge of piracy off the coast of Somalia, allow ship owners to decide whether to use armed or unarmed guards, Coast Guard Rear Admiral James Watson told shipping industry representatives at a maritime security meeting in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The revised Maritime Security Directive, highly anticipated by the shipping industry, was signed on Monday by Coast Guard Commandant Thad Allen.
"We expect to see additional security on U.S.-flagged vessels that transit these waters," said Watson, the Coast Guard's director of prevention policy. LinkHere


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