Seven suspects have been detained on board the oil tanker Nave Andromeda off the Isle of Wight after an operation involving a number of helicopters and the Special Boat Service.
The MV Nave Andromeda was seized by stowaways off the Isle of Wight earlier today, we reported on the incident here.
The Special Boat Service is the maritime special forces unit of the United Kingdom and is described as the sister unit of the 22nd Special Air Service Regiment, most of the operations conducted by the SBS are highly classified and are rarely commented on by the British government or the Ministry of Defence due to their sensitive nature.
Understand control of #naveandromeda restored by Royal navy helicopters and Special Boat Service, with frigate RICHMOND standing by. BZ everyone.
— Chris Parry (@DrChrisParry) October 25, 2020
The Ministry of Defence said in a statement:
“In response to a police request, the Defence Secretary and Home Secretary authorised Armed Forces personnel to board a ship in the English Channel to safeguard life and secure a ship that was subject to suspected hijacking.
Armed forces have gained control of the ship and seven individuals have been detained. Police investigations will now continue. Initial reports confirm the crew are safe and well.”
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
“I commend the hard work of the Armed Forces and police to protect lives and secure the ship. In dark skies, and worsening weather, we should all be grateful for our brave personnel. People are safe tonight thanks to their efforts.”
It is understood that military assistance had been requested after ‘the stowaways became violent’.