Pirates: The Maersk Alabama
Dutch And NATO Inaction?
On the other hand, not everyone is stepping up the pressure against piracy, according to critics.
On Sunday, April 18, 2009, NATO forces thwarted a pirate attack on a Norwegian tanker off Somalia. NATO forces detained 7 gunmenbut then released them. NATO operates under a "no detainment" policy, and representatives say NATO can't hold pirates in these instances; Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton insisted that the international community must hold such perpetrators accountable.
That same day, Dutch forces in the Gulf of Aden freed 20 Yemeni hostages. Part of a NATO mission, the Dutch only briefly detained the Somali pirates who had forced the Yemenis to join them in attacking merchant vessels in the Gulf. The Dutch were notified when the group began an assault on a Greek tanker. Dutch commandos chased a group of pirates aboard a skiff back to the large Yemeni fishing boat that served as their mothership.
The same week, thousands of dolphins allegedly protected a Chinese ship from Somali pirates.