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Piracy and Security News

Easing counter measures may see rise in piracy off Somalia coast, warns Secretary General, Mission to Seafarers

Piracy off the coast of Somalia, which has been in a subdued state due to strong counter measures, may come back since the multi-national coalition task force has reduced its presence after situation improved, warned Revd Andrew Wright, Secretary General, Mission to Seafarers. The Secretary General from London Headquarters was here on a brief visit to the city. Wright said that there is quite a lot of piracy around the world. “What has changed is the situation in Somalia (Gulf of Aden and Horn of Africa) – perhaps due to ...

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Gard Alert: Yemen – port situation

All major Yemeni ports, except Mokha, Ras Isa Marine Terminal and Balhaf LNG Terminal, are reported to be open and in operation despite the volatile situation along the country’s Red Sea coast. Port situation According to information received from Gard’s correspondent, Gulf Agency Co. Ltd., the port situation in Yemen as at 21 February 2017 is as follows: Working: Salif, Hodeidah, Aden, Mukalla and Ash Shihr oil terminal Closed: Mokha, Ras Isa Marine Terminal and Balhaf LNG Terminal In their recent report, our correspondent states that Hodeidah, Salif, Aden and ...

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Piracy in Asia – situation update

The piracy situation in the sea area between Sabah, Malaysia and the Southern Philippines continues to be a concern and all vessels are advised to report to the relevant authorities prior entering or passing the Sibutu Passage and Sulu-Celebes Sea. The Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia Information Sharing Centre (ReCAAP ISC) recently issued its monthly report for 2017 addressing the piracy situation in Asia. According to ReCAAP, there has been a notable decline in the number of piracy and armed robbery incidents ...

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Abu Sayyaf ‘likely’ behind Vietnam freighter attack

Filipino militants were likely behind an attack on a Vietnamese cargo ship in which one crew member was killed and six others abducted, Philippine Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay said. The MV Giang Hai was hit by unknown gunmen Sunday near the southernmost Philippine island of Baguan near the Malaysian coast, in a region notorious for such assaults. “We can only assume that they were taken by Abu Sayyaf people but this has to be verified,” Yasay told a news conference aired live on television, but added that it was “likely.” ...

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PVI: Weekly Maritime Security Report

East Africa and the Indian Ocean Somalia: Tehran says pirates free eight Iranian fishermen after kidnapping at sea 14 February An Iranian MP said eight Iranian fishermen had been released from captivity after successful negotiations between the Senegalese embassy in Somalia and the pirate captors. The fishermen were abducted from their vessels off the coast of Galgadud, central Somalia, in May 2016. PGI Analysis: Tehran blamed the kidnapping on Islamist militant group al-Shabaab at the time of the incident and said the vessel had run into technical difficulties, indicating the ...

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Vietnamese sailor killed, 7 abducted in Philippine pirate attack

Gunmen in southern Philippine waters killed one crewman of a Vietnamese vessel and abducted seven in what appeared to be the latest attack by pirates in the area, the Philippine coastguard said on Monday. Coastguard and marine soldiers rescued 17 Vietnamese who were part of the 25-man crew of MV Giang Hai, which was attacked on Sunday evening near Baguan Island in Tawi-Tawi, an area close to the stronghold of the notorious Abu Sayyaf militant group. An investigation was underway and the coastguard had launched a pursuit in coordination with ...

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Piracy Incident Alert: Abduction of Crew of Giang Hai

On 20 Feb 17, the ReCAAP ISC received report from the Focal Point (Vietnam) about an abduction incident occurred on a Vietnam-registered ship, Giang Hai. At about 1724 hrs on 19 Feb 17, the bulk carrier while underway from Indonesia to IIoilo Port, Philippines, when in the vicinity of 35 nm north west of Doc Can Island, at 06°8.0’N, 119°24’E, an unidentified number of pirates boarded the ship and abducted six crew members (Master, Chief Officer, 3rd Officer, 2nd Engineer and one oiler); and shot one crew (sailor) to death. ...

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The Information Fusion Centre (IFC) publishes guidance on Sulu Sea attacks

The IFC in Singapore has released a commentary on the recent spate of attacks in the Sulu Sea, in particular, the Sibutu Passage. The IFC reports that there were 33 incidents observed in the Sulu Sea over the last 12 months. Of these 33 incidents, 19 involved abductions. Most of the attacks have been directed at smaller boats, such as tugboats and fishing vessels. However, two large merchant ships have also been attacked. The IFC recommends the following measures be implemented while transiting in the affected area to mitigate the ...

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Indian Ocean piracy under control but Yemeni conflict a danger to shipping

The HSV 2 was attacked off Yemen.There were no instances of piracy in the Indian Ocean in 2016, but the civil war in Yemen poses a danger to shipping in the area, with several attacks against ships last year. Dryad Maritime, in a report on maritime crime in 2016, noted that despite reports of suspicious craft operating in the High Risk Area (HRA) off Somalia in 2016, there has been little or no sign of pirate paraphernalia on these craft as piracy in the region remains under control. This reduction ...

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US warns of growing piracy risk off West Africa

The United States is increasingly worried about pirate attacks off West Africa and is committed to helping countries bolster security in the region, a US diplomat said. At least 27 attacks on boats, including robberies, kidnappings or failed attempts, have occurred off the West Africa coast since April, according to the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). Off Africa’s east coast however — a former hotbed of pirate activity notably based in Somalia — only two attacks have been reported in the period. “Creating .. national strategies for maritime security is an ...

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Protection Vessels International: Weekly Maritime Security Report

East Africa and the Indian Ocean Yemen: Heavily armed assailants approach vessel off the coast of Haswayn 12 February A skiff with six armed persons on board approached a merchant vessel at 0530 hrs local time off Yemen’s east coast, 37 nm south of the town of Haswayn. The skiff approached the vessel from the port side and crossed the bow to the starboard side, and the captain of the vessel reported heavy weaponry and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) on board the skiff. The merchant vessel sounded the alarm, increased speed, ...

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Eight Iranian sailors in pirate captivity freed

Iran confirmed on Tuesday the freeing of eight Iranian sailors, in captivity since May 2016 by Somalian pirates amid continuing effort to release the remaining captives. The crew were freed as a result of negotiations held between Senegal’s embassy in Somalia and the pirates, parliamentarian Ali Yar Mohammadi said on Monday. Reportedly, the sailors are now in the Senegalese embassy in Mogadishu. The development comes six months after the crew members of an Iranian fishing vessel, which fell prey to pirates in May 2016, managed to escape from the chains ...

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Navy thwarts pirate attack on Iranian vessel

Naval forces have successfully saved an Iranian-owned trade ship from pirates in the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, which connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden. At the entrance to the Strait of Bab el-Mandeb, eleven fast boats of Somali pirates intended to attack on an Iranian commercial vessel though prompt presence of the Navy’s 44th fleet thwarted their plot. Taking advantage of large amounts of windfall profit gained by attacking commercial vessels and oil tankers of other country, pirates have managed to purchase large fuel boats and extended their ...

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Can China help the Philippines fight piracy?

President Rodrigo Duterte demonstrated his good faith in China again on January 31 when he said at an oath-taking ceremony for Philippine military officers that he had asked China if it could patrol the international waters near the Philippines, to help tackle piracy. Duterte was referring to the Sulu Sea. According to the International Maritime Bureau, in 2015, the number of piracy cases in Southeast Asia accounted for 71 per cent of the global total. Last year, the number of maritime kidnappings hit a 10-year high. Last year, the Philippines, ...

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Dryad Maritime’s Piracy Report Highlights Gulf of Guinea as New “Hotspot”

Dryad’s 2016 figures highlighted a significant increase in offshore maritime crime in the Gulf of Guinea compared to 2015. The figure of 49 attacks at sea for 2016 is a huge increase on the 2015 total of 20 attacks. The number of crew kidnapped (51) is also significantly greater than the 31 abducted for ransom the previous year. The Somali pirate threat in the Indian Ocean remains broadly contained with the main focus being the ongoing civil war in Yemen and the implications to shipping in the region. As a ...

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