(12:35 p.m. EST) -- Azamara Journey was forced to take "evasive" action November 23 when the ship's crew noticed several small boats quickly approaching the ship while sailing off the coast of Oman.

According to Cynthia Martinez, director of Global Corporate Communications for Azamara's parent company Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., "In an abundance of caution, the Captain took precautionary measures, which included asking that guests move to the interior areas of the ship, as well as evasive maneuvers."

Within 15 minutes, the small boats ceased approaching, and Journey resumed its normal activities and itinerary, Martinez said.

Though Martinez would not comment further on what evasive maneuvers the ship took, the Muscat Daily, an Oman-based English language newspaper, reported that a cruise ship, "aggressively approached" by suspected pirates skiffs November 23 fired at least three warning flares at the vessels.

Cruise Critic could not confirm that Journey did indeed fire flares, but Martinez said Azamara ships take "certain precautions and additional preparations, including extra lookouts in place around the ship," when sailing near the Gulf of Aden. "Our crew members, security teams and procedures are capable of responding to a wide variety of challenges, and we are always well-prepared for our passages through the Gulf of Aden."

Azamara Journey departed from Piraeus (Athens) on November 14 and will arrive in India on November 29.

--by Dori Saltzman, News Editor