On its return voyage to the waters of the Gulf of Aden, the frigate Changzhou of the Chinese naval 12th escort taskforce which had just completed its in-port rest and replenishment successfully expelled four pirate boats, which were pursuing the Dehang, a Hong Kong merchant ship registered in Panama, in a sea area of the Red Sea on the afternoon of October 19, 2012.
The frigate Changzhou received the emergency call for help sent by the seamen of the "Dehang" ship at 16:30, saying that "Four boats are quickly approaching us. They were less than 100 meters away, two at the left back side and two at the right back side. There are four or five gunmen carrying hook ladders on each of the boat. We ask any warship sailing nearby to help us."
Upon receiving the emergency call, the Chinese frigate Changzhou started the first-class anti-piracy deployment immediately and approached the Dehang at a high speed. Meanwhile, the soldiers on guard intensified their monitoring of the situations on the sea surface.
Seeing the pirate boats were only no more than 100 meters from the target and the experienced pirates could climb onto the commercial ship in only 10-odd minutes, Liang Yang, captain of the Changzhou, ordered to sail at the top speed.
A signalman reported at 16:43 that he found two high-speeding pirate boats in eyesight distance. The Changzhou immediately fired detonation bombs towards the pirate boats as a warning.
At 16:44, the Changzhou fired another two detonation bombs at the other two pirate boats to expel them from the Dehang ship.
Three minutes later, the pirates threw their weapons, such as bazookas and guns, into the sea and fled like the wind.
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