Piracy off the Somali coast has been a threat to international shipping since the beginning of Somalia's civil war in the early 1990s.
Somali pirates caused havoc in one of the world's busiest shipping lanes in 2008, hijacking more than 130 ships in 2008 alone. Foreign navies have rushed to the busy shipping lanes off the Horn of Africa to try and curb the attacks, which have brought the pirates millions of dollars. There are no signs of any respite from these highly sophisticated pirates fully equipped with logistics support to have their way in trapping jumbo ships.
On October 7, 2008, the United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 1838 calling on nations with vessels in the area to apply military force to repress the acts of piracy.