U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesperson
November 7, 2012
STATEMENT BY VICTORIA NULAND, SPOKESPERSON
Republic of Seychelles Conviction of Pirates
We welcome the November 5 sentencing by the Republic of Seychelles to sentence of 15 in connection with an attack on a merchant ship and the abduction of 13 Iranian fishermen rescued by the U.S. Navy. This sentencing brings the total number of convicted pirates to 631 - 98 in Seychelles alone - with 440 other suspected pirates facing justice in 21 countries, including the United States.
We appreciate Seychelles' regional leadership on counter-piracy, as seen in their willingness to prosecute and incarcerate Somali pirates, as well as their hosting of a regional intelligence coordination center to support future piracy prosecutions. The sentencing marks a positive step forward for building a strong and unified international response against piracy originating from Somalia and for promoting freedom of navigation worldwide.