Thousands of seafarers have been subjected to gunfire, beatings, confinement, and in some cases torture, in the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden. In spite of the violent nature of these crimes, the human cost of piracy is under-reported and misunderstood by the public. The Oceans Beyond Piracy Working Group, deeply concerned with the reports of escalating violence against seafarers and lack of public concern, called for a study into this subject—the Human Cost of Somali Piracy.
The study showed:
- 4185 Seafarers were attacked with firearms and Rocket Propelled Grenades.
- 342 Survived Incidents in Citadels (ships’ reinforced security rooms).
- 1090 Seafarers were taken hostage.
- 516 Seafarers were used as human shields.
- The cost to the Somali community is also concerning. Piracy affects food security and endangers Somali youth.
Click to view the most recent report in the series, The State of Maritime Piracy 2014