ReCAAP ISC: Seven Incidents Against Ships In Asia In January 2021
In January 2021, seven incidents of armed robbery against ships¹ were reported in Asia. No piracy² incident was reported.
The ReCAAP ISC is concerned with the continued occurrence of incidents on board ships while underway in the Singapore Strait. In January 2021, three incidents were reported in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Singapore Strait. The incidents occurred in close proximity to each other, and in particular, two incidents occurred within an interval of four hours. The ReCAAP ISC has issued an Incident Alert [IA 01/2021] on 29 Jan to alert the shipping community of the situation in the Singapore Strait.
There was no report of abduction of crew in the Sulu-Celebes Seas and waters off Eastern Sabah in January 2021. However, the risk of the abduction of crew remains high as demonstrated by the abduction of crew incident on 17 Jan 20 (with four crew still held in captivity), information of planned kidnapping (as reported in ReCAAP ISC’s Warning issued on 7 Jul 20), and the military operation on 3 Nov 20 by the Philippines authorities in preventing a kidnap-for-ransom incident.
NUMBER OF INCIDENTS
In January 2021, seven incidents of armed robbery against ships were reported in Asia. All incidents were actual incidents³. No attempted incident⁴ was reported. All incidents have been verified and reported to the ReCAAP ISC by ReCAAP Focal Points and Contact Point. Refer to the Appendix for the ‘Description of incidents (January 2021)’ on pages 19-22.
Graph 1 shows the number of incidents reported each month from January 2020 to January 2021.
STATUS OF SHIPS
Of the seven incidents reported in January 2021, three incidents occurred on board ships while underway in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Singapore Strait, three incidents occurred on board ships while anchored at anchorages in Indonesia (Belawan Anchorage and Muara Berau Anchorage) and Kandla Anchorage, India, and one incident occurred on board a ship while berthed at Makar Wharf Berth No. 5 to 7, General Santos City, Philippines.