Many countries are involved in the war against piracy, especially over the last year with the increase in the number of incidents in which merchant ships, mainly in Southeast Asia, were attacked by pirates. Many countries sent naval forces for policing and counter-piracy missions. In recent years, one of these countries has been South Korea.
Recently, almost the entire crew of a South Korean Navy ship that carried out a mission against pirates in the Horn of Africa was infected with COVID-19. Among the 301 crew members, 247 tested positive. Except for 16 in serious condition who were transferred by helicopter to a hospital, the rest of the crew are in quarantine on the ship, and will only be able to return to port in about a week.
The crew was not vaccinated at all because they set off on their mission long before vaccines were available in South Korea, and the South Korean military did not prepare an infrastructure for transportation of vaccines to its ships at sea. The ship in question is currently at sea with its crew unable to operate it because of health limitations.
Next week, about 200 other sailors, who are all vaccinated, are expected to board the ship, operate its systems and bring it safely, we hope, to its home port. As for the situation with us, the Israeli Navy and the rest of the IDF prepared ahead of time, and the crews of all the Navy vessels have been vaccinated.