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Piracy At Sea

Counter-Piracy Tugboat & Barge Guide

ReCAAP issue 'Tug Boats & Barge' guide to help owners, operators and crew stay safe from hijacking and piracy. The guide contains inputs and experience of tug boat owners, operators and masters whose vessels had been robbed or hijacked; and modus operandi of the robbers and hijackers.  In planning a passage, the guide highlights the responsibilities of the ship owner, ship master and crew at the various phases: the pre-sailing, sailing and post incident reporting/follow-up phases. In past four years (2008-2011), it was observed that more tug boats and barges had been targets of robbery and hijacking in certain locations of Asia. The inherent characteristics and activities of tug boats towing barges had made these vessels relatively more vulnerable, particularly the low freeboard, slow speed of a tug boat which on an average moving between 8-10 knots, small number of crew onboard a tug boat, and unmanned barges with cargoes and logistic items onboard. As the annual number of incidents involving tug boats boarded by pirates / robbers has shown an upward trend between 2009 and 2011, the ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre (ISC) and the Information Fusion Centre (IFC) also took the initiative to jointly produce a poster entitled “Guidelines for Tug Boats and Barges Against Piracy and Sea Robbery”

Security at Sea on Agenda at Upcoming SMM Hamburg

Image courtesy of SMM

At the forthcoming SMM maritime trade fair in Hamburg in September 2014 experts will present new security concepts for sea routes. Background Security at sea is improving: In recent months, pirate attacks on commercial ships have been repelled successfully with increasing frequency. One of the reasons is the EU-led Operation Atalanta providing military protection in the Gulf of Aden. Since 1, February 2009 commercial ships have been able to use a Transit Corridor established there

New Counter-Piracy Task Force


The Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) established Combined Task Force 151 (CTF-151) Jan. 8 specifically for counter-piracy operations. Naval ships and assets from more than 20 nations comprise the Combined Maritime Forces. U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Terence "Terry" McKnight has been named the commander of the new task force which will be fully operational by the middle of January. The CMF created the Maritime Security Patrol Area (MSPA) in the Gulf of Aden in August of 2008 to support

UN Security Council Addresses Piracy in Gulf of Guinea

Security Council. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

The United Nations Security Council called for a comprehensive regional approach to combat the threat of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, and reiterated its call on Member States to prosecute perpetrators in accordance with international laws. “The Security Council expresses its deep concern at the reported number of incidents and level of violence of acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, in the first half of 2013

Suspected Pirates Apprehended by EU NAVFOR

Photo: courtesy EU NAVFOR archive.

EU Naval Force Warship BNS Louise Marie Once Again Apprehends Suspect Pirates at Sea.     Just 12 days after EU Naval Force warship BNS Louise Marie apprehended five suspect pirates at sea off the Somali Coast, the Belgium frigate has once again located a suspect skiff - this time with three men on board.  The warship, which is operating as part of the European Union’s counter-piracy mission - Operation Atalanta

Mace Personal Defense Joins Piracy Battle

In an effort to combat the rapidly growing levels of piracy and armed robbery against ships around the world, Mace Personal Defense, Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary of Mace Security International, Inc. (OTCQB: MACE) has formed an alliance with Shipboard Defense Systems, Inc. to develop The Shipboard Defense System, a defensive on-board system to repel pirates. The Shipboard Defense System is designed with 300 gallon pressurized tanks that include loop piping installed around a vessel allowing

Piracy Dropped to a 5-year Global Low in 2012

Piracy on the world's seas at a five-year low, with 297 ships attacked in 2012, compared with 439 in 2011, according to the ICC global piracy report. Extracts from the International Chamber of Commerces (ICC) –  International Maritime Bureau (IMB) annual report on piracy follow: Worldwide figures were brought down by a huge reduction in Somali piracy, though East and West Africa remain the worst hit areas, with 150 attacks in 2012.

Counter Piracy Group Meets at UN in New York

The United States joined more than 60 nations and international organizations at the United Nations in New York on March 21, 2011, for a meeting of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia.   In a communiqué following the meeting, the Contact Group called for a renewed international commitment to combating piracy, both at sea and on land in Somalia, through robust and integrated military, law enforcement, and development activities

NATO's Weekly Piracy Assessment

Overview of week of 22-28 December 2011.   During the reporting period of 22-28 December 2011 pirate activity against vessels was low. One vessel was hijacked on 27 December approximately 50NM off the coast of Oman in the vicinity of 1818N 05736E. Details can be found in Alert 250. Masters are reminded that the threat of piracy is always present in the High Risk Area (HRA) and are advised to implement self-protection measures as recommended in Best Management Practices (BMP4)

UN Security Council Resolution - Somalia

The United Nations Security Council adopted another resolution expressing grave concern regarding the situation in Somalia and “over the recent increase in acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea against vessels off the coast of Somalia”. No new action against piracy was authorized by this resolution.  Resolution 1844 (2008) (11/20/08). (Source: Holland & Knight)

Supporting Maritime Security in East Asia

Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

 Improving maritime security through surveillance monitoring and communication systems is on the agenda at an IMO seminar in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (24-27 October).    The event is supporting senior officials from ten east-Asian coastal states

Somali Pirates free 26 Asian Sailors held since 2012

A seafarers who was captured by pirates Photo MPHRP

Somali pirates have freed 26 Asian sailors held captive in a small fishing village for more than four years since their ship was hijacked in the Indian Ocean, a government official said on Saturday. The sailors -- from China, the Philippines, Cambodia, Indonesia

Crew Kidnapping Persists Despite Piracy Slowdown -Report

Despite a decline of piracy activity in several high-risk areas, a high threat of crew kidnapping and hijacking remains in Southeast Asia and West Africa, according to a recent report from specialist crisis prevention and response consultancy NYA International.  

Reduction in Maritime Crime across World’s Traditional ‘hot spots’ - Dryad

Maritime Crime Infographic for Q3 2016

The Gulf of Guinea, South East Asia and The Indian Ocean High Risk Area (HRA) have all seen a significant reduction of reported maritime crime throughout July, August and September of this year according to Q3 analysis released today by Dryad Maritime.

Merchant Ships off Yemen Bracing for More Danger

USS Mason (File photo: U.S. Navy / Rob Aylward)

Missile attacks from Yemen on Western military craft risk spilling over into nearby busy sea lanes which could disrupt oil supplies and also other vital goods passing through the tense area, shipping and insurance sources say.   While shipping companies have yet to divert ships

Counter-piracy Measures Still Needed

Photo: International Maritime Organization

 ​Merchant shipping should continue to take protective measures against possible piracy attacks in the Gulf of Aden and the western Indian Ocean through diligent application of International Maritime Organization (IMO) guidance and Best Management Practices (BMPs).   

Cadets Stranded on Hanjin Ship Head Home

Hanjin Louisiana (Photo: Nautilus)

The Hanjin Louisiana, one of the containerships caught up in the collapse of the South Korean shipping company Hanjin, has finally docked in Singapore after several weeks of uncertainty at sea.   Among those onboard the containership were four Scottish cadets

Protecting Global Maritime Traffic

Photo:  International Maritime Organization (IMO)

 The world economy depends on safe, protected, secure and sustainable maritime traffic.    International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s Chris Trelawny outlined how sustainable maritime development, underpinned by good maritime security can support improved economic development

Salalah Port's Volume Surges

Salalah container berth

Container throughput at the Port of Salalah, part of the APM Terminals Global Terminal Network, reached 1.584 million TEU* in the first half of 2016, representing a 29% increase over volume handled during the same period the year prior. The completion of a new deep-water General Cargo and

Philippines, Indonesia Sign Maritime Accord

Photo:  Kementerian Sekretariat Negara Republik Indonesia

 The Philippines and Indonesia have agreed to join forces in combating crime on the high seas, after a surge of kidnappings by Abu Sayyaf bandits in waters between the two countries.    Philippines President Rodrigo R. Duterte and Indonesian President Joko Widodo had signed an

Piracy on the Rise in Malacca and Singapore Straits

Image: PGI’s Risk Portal

 According to PGI’s Risk Portal, there were at least 81 incidents of piracy or attempted piracy in or around the Singapore and Malacca Straits between April 2015 and April 2016.    The majority of these incidents have occurred on the western approach to the narrow waterway

Keel Laid for USNS Hershel 'Woody' Williams

Photo: General Dynamics NASSCO

U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO hosted a keel laying ceremony on Tuesday, August 2 for the U.S. Navy’s second Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) the future USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams currently under construction at the builder’s San Diego shipyard.  

Crew Kidnapping Rising in Gulf of Guinea - Dryad

Reporting w.r.t. GOG

In contrast to the substantial numbers of reported incidents across Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean in recent years, maritime crime now appears to have stabilised in these regions according to the latest Q2 maritime crime statistics released by Dryad Maritime today.  

Piracy Drops to 21-year Low, IMB Reports

Graphics: International Maritime Bureau

 Piracy and armed robbery at sea has fallen to its lowest levels since 1995, despite a surge in kidnappings off West Africa, according to a new report from the International Chamber of Commerce’s International Maritime Bureau (IMB).  

Piracy Drops to 21-year low - IMB

Courtesy IMB

Piracy and armed robbery at sea has fallen to its lowest levels since 1995, despite a surge in kidnappings off West Africa, according to a new report from the International Chamber of Commerce’s International Maritime Bureau (IMB). IMB’s global piracy report shows 98 incidents in

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