#AceNewsReport – Oct.26: The oil tanker at the centre of an alleged hijacking docked in Southampton today after special forces troops seized a group of stowaway migrants who turned violent when the crew tried to lock them in a cabin and report them: The captain of the Nave Andromeda made a panicked mayday call at around 9am yesterday saying ‘I’m trying to keep them calm but please send help’ after confronting the seven Nigerians as his ship sailed by the Isle of Wight: He ordered the 22 crew members into the ship’s citadel, an emergency room used during pirate attacks, and ‘clearly feared for their lives’ after the stowaways smashed glass and made threats to kill, according to a source:
‘Next time it could be terrorists,’ Royal Navy officer’s warns after Isle of Wight stowaway incident
Luke May: DailyMailOnline.Com/
A ten-hour standoff ensued before 16 Special Boat Service commandos, backed by airborne snipers, abseiled onto the 755ft tanker from blacked-out Merlin helicopters: Others used grappling irons to climb aboard from fast attack boats in the show of ‘overwhelming force’ that lasted just nine minutes. None of the 22 crew were harmed and the migrants are now in the custody of Hampshire Police: The Nave Andromeda, a Liberian-flagged vessel which was believed to have had 42,000 tons of crude oil on board, docked at Southampton around 2.30am this morning: Officials refused to answer questions about whether the migrants were armed and lawyers representing the tanker’s owners insisted the incident was ‘100 per cent not a hijacking’ However, former Royal Navy Rear Admiral Dr Chris Parry said the dramatic events were a serious red flag, and warned: ‘Next time they could be terrorists’.
The Nave Andromeda oil tanker docked next to the Queen Elizabeth II Cruise Terminal in Southampton, where it is seen today
A crew member is seen on the deck of the oil tanker Nave Andromeda after it was moored at the cruise terminal at Southampton this morning
The Special Boat Service (SBS) raided the tanker yesterday evening off the Isle of Wight after stowaways were found on board who threatened the crew. Pictured is an official on the boat today
Rear Admiral Dr Chris Parry told Good Morning Britain today: ‘Next time it may not be just stowaways. It could be terrorists, it could be people smugglers or anything: ‘We’ve got to approach this problem in a much more sophisticated way, we’ve got to up our intelligence. We’ve got to demand more from shipping companies and also from foreign countries with whom we do business: ‘We’re into a whole era now of mass migration and I think that covers a lot of things that we probably won’t want to happen in our vicinity or in our country.’
The Nave Andromeda, which set off from Nigeria three weeks ago, had been due to dock in Southampton at 10.30am yesterday. It sent a mayday signal at around 9am off the south-east coast of the Isle of Wight:
Fears of a Hollywood-style hijacking as seen in films such as Captain Phillips were fuelled by tracking data from the website MarineTraffic, which appeared to show the tanker zig-zagging and going in circles: Two Merlin helicopters and two Wildcat surveillance aircraft had been placed on standby, along with a Chinook at RAF Odiham in Hampshire.
The SBS had been warned of a ‘perceived serious threat to the vessel and potentially to the crew’ The elite unit routinely trains for such missions, using Wildcats to fly ahead and create a diversion while Merlins hover over the stern, allowing troops to storm the ship at 7.30pm:
#AceNewsDesk report ……………Published: Oct.26: 2020:
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