CONCORD Assembly Lowers Alert Status as Capsuleer Encounters with "Drifters" Raise Questions

By Lina Ambre

YULAI – Following an emergency meeting of the Security Committee of the CONCORD Assembly this morning, CONCORD has formally lowered its fleet alert status from 'High' to 'Ready to Deploy'. CONCORD's Genesis Fleet Commander, General Odo Korachi, has confirmed that 'fleet elements have been redeployed to ready positions within the region, and authorization for maximum response has been returned to fleet command by all field commanders.' Asked to comment on the nature of 'maximum response', General Korachi refused to elaborate.

In the course of the last 24 hours, the fleets of New Eden's big four powers have been at varying states of alert and readiness. From the Caldari State, the Scope has received reports of megacorporation security fleets mobilizing across Caldari regions, with the Caldari Navy taking up positions along the borders with the Gallente Federation and Minmatar Republic. Within the Gallente Federation, movements of Federation Navy ships have been observed, and there have been several reports that the Federation Intelligence Office has launched large numbers of surveillance drones across Gallente territory at the express order of President Jacus Roden.

By contrast, levels of fleet activity within the Minmatar Republic are apparently low, with a noticeable increase in the state of readiness of Republic Fleet forces but little overt action. The Amarr Empire's response to the emergence of the so-called 'Drifters' and the uncloaking of so many large structures within their territory has been muted. Imperial Navy and House fleets have been patrolling the Empire in significant numbers since the accession to the throne of Empress Jamyl Sarum, and the main change observed yesterday was the launch of several squadrons of the Imperial Navy's 1st Throne Worlds Fleet.

The most prominent activity and engagement with the Drifters seen in the last 24 hours has involved independent capsuleers, who have quickly moved to investigate the newly visible structures and the mysterious vessels that have appeared in proximity to many of them. Capsuleer pilots have reported significant wormhole activity associated with the Drifter vessels and have pointed out a clear link to both the Sleepers and the Jove race. While pointing out these aspects of the Drifters, capsuleers have carried a variety of experiments to test the limits of these entities. One pilot, Katsu Kho, has even established that the Drifters will use deadly force against the low-energy Zephyr-class exploration ship. As Sleepers are well-known to ignore these ships the implications of this behavior are troubling.