>Turkish Naval Commandoes On Board of M/V Leopard

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Leopard and TCG Gaziantep
Photo: Genelkurmay Başkanlığı

According to Turkish General Staff’s announcement, on 13 January 2010, Danish-flagged cargo ship M/V Leopard, called on the radio for help, stating she had been attacked by sea pirates. Subsequently the contact to the ship was lost. The ship was 200 miles off the coast of Oman at that time.

NATO’s Standing Naval Task Group Commander (SNMG-2/CTF-508) in the region, assigned TCG Gaziantep, which was the closest ship to the distressed M/V Leopard, to help the merchant ship.

Reaching the position of the ship at noon, TCG Gaziantep realized after sea and aerial reconnaissance, that M/V Leopard’s engines were silent and there was no trace of any human action on board.

The commander of TCG Gaziantep, asked for permission to be allowed to board the merchant ship, and he was authorized to do so, at 16:00 (18:00 local time)

Turkish naval special forces teams boarded M/V Leopard at night, under the cover of darkness and took the control of the ship. The search on board of the M/V Leopard is continuing.

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