22 January 2013

Somalia: UK Pledges U.S $3.5 Million in Fight Against Piracy

The British government will donate 2.2 million pounds ($3.5 million) to support international efforts to tackle piracy off the coast of Somalia, UK Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt announced Monday (January 21st).

The funds will go to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Counter-Piracy Programme, benefiting such projects as the construction of a modern prison in Garowe to which pirates convicted abroad can be transferred, efforts to tackle corruption in Somalia's penal system and capacity building for the Somali coast guard.

"The UNODC will work with maritime authorities in Mogadishu, Puntland and Somaliland to begin the process of re-establishing Somalia's maritime integrity following political progress on the ground," Burt said, according to an official press release.

Piracy attacks across the world reached a five-year low in 2012, due in part to decreasing Somali piracy, the International Maritime Bureau said in a report released January 16th.

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