It was revealed that more civilian Amarr ships were destroyed earlier today within the borders of Republic space under fire from unidentified armed vessels. The first report of the incident was made by capsuleer and miner Nedal Hegoth who quickly posted on GalNet to state that he witnessed the incident in a remote part of the Dammalin system while scouting for mineral resources.
“I counted six Amarr vessels stationed near the belt,” he said.” I’m not sure why they were there but none of them were fitted for mining. The next thing I know a squadron of Rifters blistering with canons warps and blows them to smithereens. It was all over in less than a minute. The attackers had no insignia and no active transponders so I couldn’t tell who they were, and they warped straight out again without hanging around. I’m just glad they didn’t spot me hiding on the other side of the belt or I’m sure they would’ve taken me out too.”
Shortly after this account started circulating Republic authorities issued the following statement: “We regret to announce that local patrols have identified the wreckage of a number of Amarr mercantile vessels in the Dammalin system. It is too early for us to determine the cause or the motives for their destruction but we would like to assure all of our citizens and any visitors from neighbouring empires that we are taking the matter very seriously and that we will do our utmost to bring the perpetrators of this act to justice.”
In many quarters however people are beginning to questions these assurances. Similar promises were made in response to the attack recorded two weeks ago in the Osoggur system, and the same sentiments have been repeated on numerous occasions in regards to the guerilla war still being fought by the Defiants and their militia allies in the Bleak Lands. In fact, if rumours are to be believed, rogue militia groups are now launching their attacks from bases inside the Republic's borders. Last week General Saracen of the Amarrian 7th Fleet questioned the Republic's stance on these issues, and the Amarr government subsequently issued an official warning to Prime Minister Midular regarding the apparent lack of progress in bringing these rogue militia under control. Many now feel that the Republic's leaders need to take a more hard-line approach before the situation deteriorates any further.
“It is about time that the Republic changed the record,” said Maldor Doran, patriarch of Sarum scion House Doran, when questioned by the press in response to this latest statement. “If they cannot bring the rabble in their domain under their heel then perhaps they should seek the advice and aid of those with greater accomplishment and experience. In Amarr troublemakers such as these would have been apprehended within days.”
Many within the Republic have however not taken this criticism lightly. “It is insulting to think that we are incapable of taking care of our own affairs,” said Republic Security Services Captain Xalabor Jhor in a recent RSS bulletin. “We are simply taking the time to gather the appropriate evidence and corroborate the testimony of witnesses. Unlike other cultures we do not condemn the innocent until they are proven guilty, nor do we parade our criminal investigations before the public eye for the entertainment of the masses. These issues will be resolved in good time, and we simply ask for a little patience.”
Exactly how much patience the Republic’s detractors have left remains to be seen.