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Gov't to carry out counter-piracy drill

All Headlines 11:00 March 14, 2019

SEOUL, March 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's ocean ministry said Thursday it will carry out a joint counter-piracy drill with the Navy and shipping companies to prepare for various contingencies.

The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said the training will be conducted on Friday in waters off the southern coast with the Navy's Cheonghae Unit, which was created around a decade ago for anti-piracy operations off the Somali coast, taking part.

The exercise will be conducted under a scenario of a South Korean merchant ship being hijacked by pirates near Somalia.

Around representatives from the ocean ministry, the Navy, and shipping firms will participate in the training.

South Korean destroyer Daejoyoung, which will be dispatched to the Gulf of Aden on March 29, will also be utilized for the drill, along with a 50,000-ton vessel.

"It is important to carry out mock trials that are like actual situations with cooperation between the government, the military, and private companies," an official from the ocean ministry said. He said such efforts can protect lives and property from piracy.

Around 400 South Korean ships are estimated to sail near the Horn of Africa annually. The ocean ministry said the shipping route is especially significant as those ships also carry crude oil and liquefied natural gas.

South Korean Navy's Daejoyoung destroyer (Yonhap)


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