A ransom of USD 2 million has finally been paid by MISC to the Somalian pirates for the release of the MISC ships and crews held by the pirates. However, nothings has been said about the options to take to safeguard our ships from being held captive in future. I suppose, whatever actions needed to be taken by MISC and the government, must of course be kept unknown to the pirates.
But I suppose, sending our RMN ships to protect MISC ships, each time it sails through the dangerous sea waters of the Gulf of Eden may not be a viable solution, as this will incur problems to the RMN. I am sure, the RMN does not favour this solution, as it will cause money (much more than the ransom paid), and more importantly a strain on the RMN resources. It is not as easy as sending ground troops to protect our borders.
Operating in the vast open seas imposes unique problems to the sailors, as detection to dangers especially at night will be extremely difficult. It will be even more difficult if the sea area is being frequently traversed by ships of all shapes and size. And pirates that are known to use small and extremely fast boats, will make identification exceedingly difficult for escorting ships.
The problems of piracy in the Gulf of Eden, which has been going on for quite some time now, should no longer be the problem of individual ship owners or individual countries; but rather the collective responsibility of shipping nations.
And Malaysia being a shipping nation must endeavour to bring to notice to the world community, the dangers faced by shipping nations in the Gulf of Eden, and the urgency to fight the increasing menace from Somalian sea pirates. And I think the best forum to deal with this menace will be no less than the United Nations General Assembly.