18 Feb '11, 12am

Somali pirates 'heading for Asia'

Somali pirates 'heading for Asia'

WASHINGTON: A US military commander warned Thursday that Somali pirates were skirting pressure by moving deeper into Asian waters and said the only solution was to restore stability in the African nation. Admiral Robert Willard, head of the 300,000-troop Pacific Command, voiced exasperation at years of naval efforts to stem the flow of pirates from Somalia -- which has been effectively without a central government for two decades. "It's remarkable that 28 nations combining their maritime forces together in the Gulf of Aden have not been able to defeat this challenge," Willard said at the Asia Society on a visit to Washington. Due to the naval campaign, "the pirates are just ranging farther out into the Indian Ocean -- hundreds of miles, quite literally," Willard said. Willard said the pirates posed particular problems for Maldives, a sparsely populated Indian Ocean archipe...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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