By Richards Adeniyi
The Nigerian Navy is planning a fresh anti-piracy operation on the nation’s territorial waters that will last for six months.
Although, the Navy had maintained an anti-piracy operation on the coastal waters, it said will extend this till January next year.
The NAF Director of Information, Captain Suleiman Dahun in a statement explained that this was to check increasing cases of illegalities on the nation’s coastal waters.
The Navy had recently intercepted some merchant vessels involved in illegal operations on the waters.
Dahun was reported saying the six months operation will be to root out all criminal operations on the territorial waters.
He said in a statement, “Against this background and the need to sustain the successes achieved so far, the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, has directed the commencement of the fifth phase of ‘Operation Tsare Teku’.
“A total of six NN ships, NNS Okpabana, NNS Unity, NNS Nwamba, NNS Obula and NNS Sagbama have been assigned for the operation. Some of the objectives of the operation include containing militant activities, sustaining maritime interdiction operations and blockade to deter pirates and robbers and militants.
He said since the commencement of Operation Tsare Teku, there has been a remarkable reduction in pirate attacks in Nigerian waters. “In the first half of 2016, 53 pirate attacks on shipping were recorded with 36 successful. However, in the corresponding period in 2017, only four successful attacks occurred out of a total of 17 attempted attacks.”