The 26th regular session of the IMO Assembly has adopted (on 2 December 2009) a resolution on piracy and armed robbery against ships in waters off the coast of Somalia.
The 26th regular session of the IMO Assembly has adopted (on 2 December 2009) adopted a resolution on piracy and armed robbery against ships in waters off the coast of Somalia, which, among other things, condemns and deplores all acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships, irrespective of where such acts have occurred or may occur. Building on resolution A.1002(25), adopted by the Assembly in 2005, the new resolution welcomes the decision, taken on 30 November by the United Nations Security Council (through resolution 1897 (2009)), to renew, for a period of 12 months, its previous authorizations for States and regional organizations co-operating with the Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG) to enter Somalia"s territorial waters and use all necessary means to fight piracy and armed robbery at sea off the Somali coast, provided advance notification was given by the TFG to the United Nations Secretary-General.
The IMO Assembly resolution (A.1026(26)) supports the Security Council resolution by appealing to all parties that may be able to assist, to take action (within the provisions of international law) to ensure that all acts or attempted acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships are stopped and any plans for committing such acts are curtailed; and that hijacked ships and any persons on board are immediately and unconditionally released and that no harm is caused to them.
The resolution also recommends that, when navigating through the Gulf of Aden, ships should follow the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor and take the advice and guidance provided by the relevant entities. States are strongly urged to take all necessary legislative, judicial and law-enforcement action to enable them to receive and prosecute or extradite any pirates or suspected pirates and armed robbers captured by warships or military aircraft, or other ships or aircraft clearly marked and identifiable as being on government service.
The Assembly also adopted the revised Code of Practice for the Investigation of the Crimes of Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships, updating the Code of Practice adopted by resolution A.922(22) in 2001.
IMO Secretary-General Efthimios E. Mitropoulos has welcomed both developments.
?Co-operation and collaboration among States is vital if the fight against modern-day piracy is to succeed,? he said. ?The Security Council and IMO have worked closely to ensure that the appropriate framework exists to facilitate such co-operation and both these resolutions will help to strengthen the position and encourage the appropriate action to be taken.?