Antony hints at terror links to Somali pirates

Antony hints at terror links to Somali pirates

He also said that "some other powerful forces sitting somewhere else" were behind the pirates and a joint coordinated effort was needed under the United Nations to fight the menace on the high seas.

“The CCS will soon take a decision on finalising a new policy on fighting piracy,” Antony said in reply to a query on the lack of legislative provisions to prosecute pirates.

"There are some other powerful forces behind the piracy and they are sitting somewhere else. Only a joint, coordinated effort under the United Nations can be an ultimate solution to the piracy problem," he added.

He also noted that Indian Navy was not alone in the Gulf of Aden and navies of the US, Britain, France, China and other countries were also operating in the region against Somali pirates.

"Despite the presence of such a large naval force there, piracy is continuing. When they (other navies) apply pressure on the pirates in the Gulf of Aden, the pirates move to the Lakshadweep and Minicoy Islands region," he said.

Antony also called upon the Indian Coast Guard commanders, whom he addressed earlier in the day, to achieve synergy with other stake-holders in tackling piracy.

“The increasing incidences of piracy off the Lakshadweep and Minicoy Islands call for a heightened security consciousness. The Coast Guard in coordination with the navy has aptly responded to such situations," Antony noted.

"However, there is a need to build upon and further strengthen the synergy between navy, Coast Guard and all other organisations in charge of coastal security," he added.