European Union forces attack pirate targets on Somali shore
An armed pirate keeps watch along the coastline at Hobyo town, northeastern Somalia, in 2010.
May 15th, 2012
07:01 AM ET

European Union forces attack pirate targets on Somali shore

European Union naval forces on Tuesday struck Somali pirate targets on the coast of the country in the first raids by the European force on the Somali mainland.

“We believe this action by the EU Naval Force will further increase the pressure on, and disrupt pirates’ efforts to get out to sea to attack merchant shipping and dhows," Rear Adm. Duncan Potts, operational commander of the force, said in a statement.

Several pirate attack skiffs, the small boats pirates use to attack merchant vessels in the open ocean, were destroyed in the raid, said Timo Lange, media officer at the naval force's headquarters in England.

No Somalis were injured in the raid, which was conducted entirely by air, the force's statement said.

"The local Somali people and fishermen – many of whom have suffered so much because of piracy in the region, can be reassured that our focus was on known pirate supplies and will remain so in the future," Potts said in the statement.

On March 23, the Council of the European Union said the naval force would be permitted to attack pirate installations on shore.

The force currently has nine warships and five maritime patrol aircraft operating off Somalia under Operation ATALANTA, which began in December 2008.

In April, the International Maritime Bureau reported that pirate attacks off Somalia had decreased dramatically during the first quarter of the year as compared to a year earlier.

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Filed under: Pirates • Somalia
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Jefferson

    Hello!!
    I'm jefferson, and I does like CNN a lot.

    May 15, 2012 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  2. UsayWha?

    I’m sure soon there will be a certain political element that will be criticizing President Obama for letting the EU do this and the U.S. isn’t involved (that we know of) but as soon as the U.S. gets involved he will be criticized for getting involved by the same element.

    May 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
  3. steve

    Ahh the small government of Somalia. A Tea Party's dream.

    May 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe R.

      More like the Dems. "Hey there's a whole country that could use government handouts! Let's Go help them and in return they do nothing."

      May 15, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Winky

      funny comment, that. So true...

      May 15, 2012 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Duane - St. Pete FLA

      no....that will come this November.....bye Obama!!!

      May 15, 2012 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  4. NoTax

    gosh, one pirat look like exactly O'bama

    May 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • James Taylor

      Well I am sure that there is a serial killer that probably looks like you too. SO glad our wonderful president has kept us safe!!

      May 15, 2012 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jbro

      No. No. No. The pirates look exactly like Obama's son would look.. 😉

      May 15, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Voig Nederlander

      Gee, you can't spell.

      May 15, 2012 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • evelyn2

      Gosh, your English sounds just like a pirate's. Racist.

      May 15, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
  5. tez07

    Everything was going to plan until Jack Sparrow arrived and sunk the entire British Navy

    May 15, 2012 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Stella333

    These pirates are very disappointing! No eye patches, no swords, no parrot on the shoulder... Most of them wear sandals and flip-flops! They are really going downhill...

    May 15, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  7. odummastinx

    GWB launches attacks and CNN/libs pile on him as a war criminal. Obama drops missiles in areas that we have not declared war on and CNN praises him. The EU attacks lesser armed Somalis and CNN trumpets it as a great thing. Nope no bias here.

    May 15, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Winky

      feel the constipation? yup, oh the stink

      May 15, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • D

      I know, right?
      The nerve of the EU! Attacking those poor, free enterprising Somali's! Where's the outrage!?

      May 15, 2012 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • branko

      Right and following your logic it was ok for GWB to start a war in IRAQ right? by the way these pirates in somalia probably work for terrorist groups, but no its not ok to get on their butts right? Somalia has no government capable of controling anything what would you recomend. Or you just like to talk out of your a.. , typical right wing mentality

      May 15, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • OKC

      Amazing how that works........................the first gay president according to newsweek and the new yorker.........until he loses votes then it willhave been a joke.

      May 15, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Solitaire

    I congratulate the EU. Good work.

    May 15, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  9. whatsnaname

    It's about time the EU did something about anything. The normal course is to whine that the US needs to clean up their backyard, and then complain about how we did it.

    May 15, 2012 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Peter

    Misleading..."The local Somali people and fishermen – many of whom have suffered so much because of piracy in the region". It was overfishing by tourists, mainly from Europe, that caused many Somali fishermen to resort to piracy as a means to survive....

    May 15, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • PHD (Plain Highschool Deploma) MIKED

      Yes, these pirates are victims. I am sure they are not affiliated to the Warlords of the region. They were so poor that they purchased belt fed weapons and rocket propelled grenades. They probably don’t even enjoy murdering all the people they do. I sure hope the fishing in Alaska doesn’t dry up. We would have some pretty big pirates on our hands.

      May 15, 2012 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • OKC

      LOL........how amazing it is that when attacked either Europe or US it is their/our fault........everytime.............tourist fishermen did more damage than the thousands of daily local commercial fishermen.........or dod they attack cargo shipsbecause it is against international law for them to be armed and so easy pray for the hunters

      May 15, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Eric L

    So, the EU attacks Somali pirate ports, and the anti-Obama crowd decides to post negative comments about him? Why not post your disagreement with the Easter Bunny, it has as much relevance.

    May 15, 2012 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  12. ThrowMeaBone

    Yeah, let's let the U.S. get involved so the Somali's can drag more U.S. Ranger bodies through the streets. They were so grateful we were there the first time... The U.S. needs another nation building project like we need another hole in our collective heads.

    It'about time the EU did something for themselves without the U.S. "Global Police" begging for their help.

    May 15, 2012 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • OKC

      Thank you................

      May 15, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Roknlive

    What a shame it is so violent. That coastline looks absolutely gorgeous and the water so inviting. The Somali's are so stupid: they are in paradise and are sitting on a tourist goldmine. Not to mention the historical sites. Their violent and idiotic nature damns them and their offspring to immense suffering with no foreseeable end is sight.

    May 15, 2012 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rainman

      The water might look inviting, but it has all kinds of toxins in it from the time that coastline was used as a big waste dumping area.

      May 15, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
  14. John Stone

    Alrighty then now that it's safe time to book my Norwegian Cruise to Somolia and get a taste of the locals and their fine fare.......

    May 15, 2012 at 4:04 pm | Report abuse |
  15. TheCoolOne

    Those silly pirates... first uploading copyrighted material on megavideo, now this?

    May 15, 2012 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
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