Somalia: NATO-US collaboration rescues crew of sunken dhow

A SH-60B Sea Hawk helicopter from the USS Elrod rescued 12 men by air, July 5, 2010.

From  Early yesterday Puntland authorities contacted the NATO flagship HNLMS De Zeven Provinciën requesting aid for the dhow, Al Anwari. The dhow reportedly with a crew of 19, which was sailing from Oman to Boosaaso, had sunk off the North Eastern coast of Somalia.

A US Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA), conducting counter piracy missions in the area, was asked by the Commander of Task Force 508 to fly to the last known location of the Al Anwari to investigate. …

USS Elrod, which was also in the area, was assigned to participate in the search and rescue. She deployed her Seahawk helicopter, which arrived to find eleven people in a life raft and five people in a skiff (small boat). The helicopter rescued the seamen in two groups of eight and brought them on board of USS Elrod. The NATO warship TCG Gelibolu assisted in the rescue. Until it was confirmed the total crew consisted of those sixteen people found, the USS Elrod and TCG Gelibolu searched the area. …

The Puntland authorities were very grateful to NATO and the USS Elrod and a Puntland spokesperson said “I can’t express in words how everyone in Puntland who has heard this good information about the survivors is happy and acknowledge your untiring efforts and 24/7 readiness not only to fight Pirates and Piracy activities but to save the lives of  traders and innocent people when they are in need and /or their life is in between death and life.”  (photo: Technical 2nd Class Charles Canale/U.S. Navy)

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