An Iranian and Thai fishing vessel have both been targeted by Somali pirates.

On Sunday 22nd November an Iranian fishing vessel was seized by pirates and the following day a Thai fishing vessel was also targeted by pirates.

The fishing vessels were operating approximately 200 nautical miles off of the coast of Somalia when they were attacked by pirates in small skiffs.

The Thai fishing vessel managed to escape however the Iranian fishing vessel has been seized with 15 crew on board.

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Illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing being carried out by foreign fishing trawlers in the waters off Somalia will ultimately force local fishing communities into maritime crime.

The targeting of fish stocks off the Horn of Africa by foreign companies is further contributing to the economic struggle of the communities of the fishing towns that make up the Somali coastline, from which the threat of modern piracy as we know it first emerged.

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International naval efforts and maritime security teams on board commercial vessels are currently the only deterrents to the pirates who remain dormant in Somalia.

A recent visit to the town of Eyl in northern Somalia, by Andrew Harding, Africa correspondent for the BBC, suggests pirate bosses are lying in wait for the opportunity to resume full piracy operations.

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