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Private Anti-Piracy Forces?

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Insurance companies hit hard by the paying of ransoms to pirates around Somalia are contemplating the formation of a private security force for commercial vessels.

According to a report by Sharon Weinburger of AOL News, the proposed forces would use high-speed, armed patrol boats to protect merchant traffic due to a shortage of warships in the region. Pirates have moved their attacks into the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean after warships patrolled the Gulf of Aden.

Giles Noakes, a security official with the Baltic and International Maritime Council, said that the private force of could operate on a not-for-profit basis while operating 16 patrol boats.

Even then, Noakes admitted that the force probably could not assist private yachts, like the one hijacked by Somali pirates who later killed four Americans earlier this year.

Some ships in the region are already traveling with armed security guards.