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Piracy and Security News

UKMTO Weekly Piracy Report 19 – 26 January 2020

Warnings, advisories and piracy incidents in the Indian Ocean Area by the UKMTO in the past week.

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Protection Vessels International: Weekly Maritime Security Report

East African and Indian Ocean Somalia: President Erdogan says Mogadishu invited Ankara to explore oil in its seas 20 January Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said that Somalia invited Turkey to explore for oil in its seas after Ankara signed a maritime agreement with Libya in 2019. Erdogan said Turkey would take steps in line with the Somali invitation but did not elaborate further. Turkey has been a major source of aid to Somalia following a famine in 2011, but the statement comes two days after a suicide car bombing targeted ...

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Pirate attacks: GoG account for 90% of global crew kidnapping in 2019

Despite the drop in the piracy and sea robbery across the globe, the Gulf of Guinea, GoG, has remained a hotspot for criminal activities in Africa, the International Maritime Bureau 2019 piracy report has said. According to the report, 162 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against vessels were reported between January and December 2019 as against 201 in 2018 representing 19.4 percent decrease. In the 2019 report, an unprecedented number of seafarers were kidnapped and taken hostage as a total of 134 crew were seized in 19 incidents. Part ...

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Pirates release Happy Lady tanker crew

Armed hostage-takers on Wednesday released a Greek oil tanker captain and seven crew members. The crew members of the Greek-flagged Happy Lady tanker were kidnapped on December 31 in the port of Limbe near Cameroon’s economic capital Douala. The crew members comprised five Greeks, two Filipinos and one Ukrainian national. Read more: Pirates attack Greek oil tanker off Togo “I am delighted with the release of five Greek sailors,” said Greek Merchant Marine Minister Giannis Plakiotakis. “Our coordinated efforts have been effective.” Plakiotakis noted that the sailors were only released ...

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BIMCO Issues Update On Persian Gulf Tensions And Sanctions Clauses

Overview After the killing of General Qassem Soleimani by a US drone in early January 2020, and the following retaliation by Iran, BIMCO is publishing its view of the escalated tension in the Persian Gulf, as well as advice regarding the new sanctions clauses, and encourages owners, operators and charterers to follow the operational and contractual guidance set out in this article. The killing of Iranian General Soleimani constituted a significant escalation of an already tense situation between US and Iran. The subsequent firing of missiles at US military targets ...

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Dryad Global’s annual in-depth analysis of world-wide maritime security incidents, geo-political risk factors and industry trends to watch in 2020

In summary, our report controversially suggests that the significant security costs for transits in the Indian Ocean and through the Red Sea are no longer justified. There is little incentive for the insurance industry to remove its premiums that are linked to the piracy threat. Why? • Despite commanding the largest premiums and associated costs of armed guards, the Indian Ocean ranks fourth in maritime crime incidents with less than one fifth of incidents of the most active; West Africa. • In 2019 West Africa was the most dangerous commercial ...

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Russia, Japan kick off anti-piracy drills in Arabian Sea

Russian Navy ships and a destroyer of Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force started anti-piracy drills in the Arabian Sea, the press office of Russia’s Baltic Fleet reported. “A group of the Baltic Fleet’s ships comprising the guard ship Yaroslav Mudry, the tanker Yelnya and the sea tug Viktor Konetsky has arrived at the designated area of the Arabian Sea for a joint exercise with the destroyer Harusame of Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force,” the press office said in a statement. The Russian Navy ships and the Japanese destroyer will hold communications and ...

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Eight countries support European-led maritime mission in Strait of Hormuz

The governments of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands and Portugal have pledged their political support for the creation of a European-led maritime surveillance mission in the Strait of Hormuz, according to a joint statement released Monday on the website of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs. “Recent developments in the Middle East are extremely worrying as they fuel tensions and increase the risk of a potential large-scale conflict with consequences in the whole region. This context calls for enhanced de-escalation initiatives to stop the ongoing ...

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‘Cyber Managed’ from Bureau Veritas: the pragmatic path to cyber resilience and protection

Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore (BV) is seeing a rapid growth in the number of ships applying for its ‘Cyber Managed’ notation. The notation was co-developed by BV and external marine security experts as part of joint technical working groups organized by BV. It ensures compliance with the main existing cybersecurity standards (IMO MSC-Fal 1-Circ3, NIST, BIMCO etc.) and will enable shipowners to meet the requirements of IMO’s guidance to administrations that maritime cybersecurity risk should be reflected in ship security practice under the ISM Code by January 1, 2021. ...

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Stormy seas: Singapore grapples with a spate of piracy

The Straits of Malacca and Singapore (SOMS) is one of the busiest trade routes in the world. Nearly half of all global seaborne trade passes through this marine corridor making it a strategic chokepoint for Indonesian, Malaysian and Singaporean imports. Between September and December 2019, there were 16 incidents of piracy in the SOMS, double the total number of incidents in 2018. With piracy threatening security in the strait, littoral states will have to come together to protect their imports. What is behind the surge in piracy in the Straits ...

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South Korea mulls sending own ships to Strait of Hormuz

South Korea is considering sending its own ships to the Strait of Hormuz to safeguard its vessels rather than joining an international maritime security alliance, a presidential aide has said. Around 70 percent of its oil imports pass through the waterway, making it crucial for the country’s ships to be protected from piracy and other threats. But, amid tension in the Middle East following the assassination of General Qassem Soleimani from a US airstrike and in a bid to avoid a feud with key oil producer Iran, the South might ...

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S. Korea’s options on Hormuz strait appear shortlisted

The South Korean government has yet to complete a review of options on how to contribute to security in the Strait of Hormuz, a Cheong Wa Dae official said Saturday amid reports that a final decision on whether to send troops there may be imminent. “As you know, we will have to make a decision in consideration of the people’s life and security as well as oil supply,” the official said, adding relevant options are “still being reviewed.” Consultations with Iran are under way as well, he added. Cheong Wa ...

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ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre issued an Incident Alert on Incidents involving ships while underway in the eastbound lane of Singapore Strait

On 18 January 2020, two incidents occurred within an interval of five hours to the same barge carrying scrap metal while underway in the eastbound lane of the Singapore Strait. In both incidents, the perpetrators stole some scrap metal. There was no confrontation between the perpetrators and the crew. With these two incidents, a total of three incidents have been reported in the Singapore Strait since January 2020. [The first incident in 2020 occurred on 8 January 2020 to tanker, British Mariner while underway in the eastbound lane of the ...

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UKMTO Weekly Piracy Report 12 – 18 January 2020

Warnings, advisories and piracy incidents in the Indian Ocean Area by the UKMTO in the past week.

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Protection Vessels International: Weekly Maritime Security Report

East Africa and the Indian Ocean UK/Straits of Hormuz: British Royal Navy increase escort capability for British shipping in Straits of Hormuz 10 January The British Royal Navy will increase the complement of Royal Navy vessels to escort British-flagged commercial ships sailing through the Strait of Hormuz amid escalating tensions in the region. The Royal Navy previously escorted British ships in the area between July and November 2019, after the seizure of a British vessel by Iran. The decision comes following the increase in tensions between Iran and the US ...

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