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Brits form private navy

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British businessmen have formed a private navy called Typhon to combat piracy in the Indian Ocean. The group, which is recruiting 240 former marines and sailors, is expected to protect its first group of oil tankers and bulk carriers in late March or April, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.

Typhon will include a mother ship, high-speed armored patrol boats, and armed soldiers. Their aim is to deter pirates rather than engage in gunfights, according to a story in Maritime Executive magazine.

The mother ship will be UK-flagged, which would allow it to carry weapons into harbor rather than keep them on platforms in international waters. The navy’s funding will come from shipping firms – in much the same way as cargo ships sailing under Russian, Chinese and Indian flags hire private convoys.

In Greek mythology, Typhon is a monster with a hundred heads, also known as Typhoeus, who was eventually killed by Zeus. Or it may be Typhoeus’ son.

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