Are there still pirates in the world?
Modern-day pirate attacks are shockingly violent. The BBC reports that today's pirates attack gas tankers and disaster-relief ships with AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades. Their objective -- to kidnap, steal, attack, rape, and murder. Says House of Commons member Gwyneth Dunwoody, "There is nothing remotely romantic about the perpetrators of these appalling crimes."
Still, there is good news for landlubbers. According to International Herald Tribune, the number of global pirate attacks fell in 2006 to their lowest level in eight years. This is thanks to increased patrols by law enforcement and precautionary measures taken by ship crews. With 50 reported attacks in 2006, Indonesia remains the world's "piracy hot spot." Bangladesh isn't far behind with 47.
So, pirates do exist today. But they're dangerous people and nothing like the Hollywood version. Oh, and we doubt any of 'em look like Johnny Depp.
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