The bulk carrier MV Lila Norfolk was approached, fired upon and boarded by seven pirates in a skiff launched from a mother vessel on 4 January in the North Arabian Sea. The crew mustered in the citadel, while an Indian navy vessel came to the ship’s aid.

The pirates were armed with machine gun and rocket launcher. The master raised the alarm, contacted local authorities, activated the Ship Security Alert System (SSAS) and all crew mustered in citadel.

The Indian Navy warship INS Chennai, which was already on anti piracy patrol, responded to the distress call and dispatched its helicopter to locate the vessel. The warship arrived at the location and the naval boarding team searched the vessel. Once the clearance was given, all 21 crew safely emerged from the citadel and regained control of the vessel.

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According to the Indian Navy, the attempt of hijacking by the pirates was probably abandoned after the forceful warning by the navy’s Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA), which flew over the vessel in the early morning of 5 January, while the INS Chennai was closing in on the vessel.

According to MarineTraffic, the Lila Norfolk is a 170,000 DWT bulk carrier (289 metres x 45 metres) sailing under the Liberian flag.

Picture: Video still from a video released by the Indian Navy on X (formerly Twitter), see the post below.

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