Pirates are all over the news this week. The Somali pirates who stole a ship full of Ukranian tanks are, I suspect, about to be unhappily reminded of what happens when you poke the sleeping bear.
However, these other Somali pirates are, I suspect, even less happy about their cargo: “Somali pirates suffered skin burns, lost hair and fell gravely ill “within days” of boarding the MV Iran Deyanat. Some of them died." “The ship is owned and operated by the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, or IRISL, a state-owned company run by the Iranian military. According to the US Treasury Department, the IRISL regularly falsifies shipping documents to hide the identity of end users, uses generic terms to describe shipments and operates under various covers to circumvent United Nations sanctions. The ship set sail from Nanjing, China, at the end of July. According to its manifest, it was heading for Rotterdam where it would unload 42500 tons of iron ore and “industrial products” purchased by a German client."