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Pirate Attacks

Yes, Oceanographers Can Help Predict Piracy Attacks

The US Naval Meteorology & Oceanography Command named a 2013 Computerworld Honors Laureate for its counter-piracy predictive modelling. The Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command (NAVMETOCCOM) received the award for a modeling capability developed by Naval oceanographers at Stennis Space Center that predicts the likelihood of pirate attacks.

IDG's Computerworld Honors Program selected NAVMETOCCOM as a 2013 Laureate in the field of Safety and Security for its development of its Pirate Attack Risk Surface (PARS). The PARS model produces a forecast of shipping vulnerability due to piracy at a certain latitude, longitude, and time. A few short months before Somali pirates hijacked the U.S.-flagged MV Maersk Alabama in 2009, NAVMETOCCOM operators were asked to assist in the fight against piracy, which had been on the rise in the Somali Basin due to government instability in the region. Pirate attacks are a threat to the United States' national security and foreign policy, and they impact maritime safety, disrupt shipping and ultimately cost the world's economy billions of dollars annually. 

 Within two weeks, the command had developed the framework of the first-generation Piracy Performance Surface (PPS) model, which produced maps of probability of attack based on how environmental conditions influenced pirate small boat operations.


Pirates Attack Fishing Vessel near Malacca Strait

Map of Strait of Malacca. By Welt-Atlas

 Pirates attacked the fishing trawler Maju Jaya in Malacca Strait in Tamiang water in North Sumatra, Indonesia on July 26.   Another fishing boat closed Maju Jaya from portside, two armed pirates went on board of Maju Jaya, threatening crew.   The pirates were armed with guns and other weapons, locked the crew on the bridge and stole jewelry, mobile phones, technologies and etc. Crew unharmed.   


Piracy: Attacks Getting Bigger, Bolder

According to data released July 14, 2011, by the International Maritime Bureau, pirate attacks off Somalia and in the GoA/Indian Ocean region climbed dramatically in the first six months of this year. Figures reveal that there were 266 attacks on vessels in this period compared with 196 attacks in 2010. “In the last six months, Somali pirates attacked more vessels than ever before and they’re taking higher risks,” IMB director Pottengal Mukundan said


Somali Piracy Contact Group: UN Plenary Meeting

The United States will join partners from over 85 countries, international organizations, & the private sector at the United Nations in New York on 1st May, 2013. The Contact Group is a growing diplomatic effort that is taking action against criminal activity that threatens commerce and humanitarian aid deliveries along one of the world’s busiest shipping corridors. On May 2, the Contact Group will hold a symposium, “Creating Economic Opportunities for Somalis


Pirate Attacks at its Lowest Since 1999

According to the Hartford Courant, pirate attacks on ships fell last year to their lowest since 1999 as incidents declined off Indonesia, the world's most dangerous area for piracy. Attacks off Somalia and Iraq surged. Attacks dropped 16 percent, to 276. About 440 crewmembers were taken hostage last year, the highest since data has been compiled in 1992. Indonesia, whose oil-rich Aceh province has been struck by a separatist rebellion, accounted for almost a third of the attacks


Multiple Pirate Attacks in Nigeria's Oil Delta

Pirates have launched a spate of attacks in the creeks of Nigeria's oil-producing Niger Delta region since last Thursday, killing three policemen and abducting at least nine people, security officials said. Most of those kidnapped were local workers in Africa's biggest oil industry, where piracy in the surrounding waterways and seas is on the rise again after a brief lull, bucking a global trend that has seen pirate attacks fall elsewhere.


Pirates Launch Renewed Attacks in Nigeria's Oil Delta

Pirates have launched a spate of attacks in the creeks of Nigeria's oil-producing Niger Delta region since last Thursday, killing three policemen and abducting at least nine people, security officials said. Most of those kidnapped were local workers in Africa's biggest oil industry, where piracy in the surrounding waterways and seas is on the rise again after a brief lull, bucking a global trend that has seen pirate attacks fall elsewhere.


This Day in Naval History – July 21

1823 - After pirate attack, LT David G. Farragut leads landing party to destroy pirate stronghold in Cuba. 1944 - Invasion and recapture of Guam begins. 1946 - In first U.S. test of adaptability of jet aircraft to shipboard operations, XFD-1 Phantom makes landings and takeoffs without catapults from Franklin D. Roosevelt. 1987 - Navy escorts first Earnest Will Convoy in the Persian Gulf. (Source: Navy News


NATO Extends Somali Counter-piracy Mission to 2016

Photo: NATO

NATO has decided to extend its Indian Ocean counter-piracy mission by two years to the end of 2016, judging that piracy remains a threat despite a sharp fall in attacks, the alliance said on Wednesday. The decision was taken by NATO defence ministers meeting in Brussels. NATO ships have patrolled the waters off the Horn of Africa since 2009, as part of a broader international effort to crack down on Somali-based pirates who had caused havoc with world shipping.


Danish Navy Foils Pirate Attack off Somali Coast

According to a report from AFP, a helicopter from a Danish warship under NATO operational control foiled a pirate attack August 28 on a merchant vessel in the Gulf of Aden. The Danish ship Esbern Snare launched a helicopter in response to a call for help from a merchant vessel, the Danish Navy told AFP. According to the report, a statement from NATO's maritime command said the attacked merchant ship was the Panamanian flagged MV Caribbean Carrier.


Tracking Global Piracy Trends

Graph: Clarkson Research Services

 Piracy has existed since the conception of shipping, and pirate attacks on vessels continue to disrupt trade, raising vessel security concerns and impacting the operation and insurance costs for ships, says Clarkson Research Services.  


Somalia: IMB Warns Vessels to Remain Vigilant Despite Drop in Piracy

Pic: UN

 The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) has warned foreign vessels to remain vigilant when sailing in the Horn of Africa, despite a lull in piracy incidents in the region.    The IMB stated that there had been no piracy incidents reported off the Somali coast between January and


37 Piracy Incidents in Q1, Says IMB

Image: International Maritime Bureau (IMB)

Worldwide, International Maritime Bureau (IMB) recorded 37 piracy and armed robbery incidents in the first quarter of 2016, down from 54 in the same period last year. Three vessels were hijacked and 29 boarded, with 26 crew kidnapped for ransom and a further 28 held hostage.  


Violent Attacks Worsen in Seas Off West Africa - IMB

Piracy on the world’s seas Courtesy ICC & IMB

 As piracy on the world’s seas continues to fall, new figures from the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Maritime Bureau (IMB) highlight growing violence off the coast of West Africa, where 44 seafarers have been captured so far this year.


Piracy: Indonesia Could be the New Somalia

Image: Indonesian Navy

 Commercial ships have been told to avoid shipping routes around Indonesia and Philippines amid fears that piracy could be reaching Somalian levels, according to Reuters.    Luhut Pandjaitan, Chief Security Minister for Indonesia


Pirates Kidnap Ship off Nigeria with 6 Turkish Crewmen

M/T Puli Photo: Kaptanoglu Shipping

 Six crew members  of a Turkish cargo ship have been kidnapped by pirates in the Niger Delta, according to Nigerian Navy spokesman, Chris Ezekobe.   The ship carrying chemicals was believed to be travelling from Gabon to Ivory Coast


Cyber Threat Grows in Maritime

Image: MarineLink

 The shipping industry’s reliance on interconnected technology also poses risks,according to Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE’s (AGCS) fourth annual Safety and Shipping Review 2016, which analyzes reported shipping losses of over 100 gross tons.  


Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea Sign Maritime Security Agreement

Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea signed an agreement to establish combined patrols to bolster security in the Gulf of Guinea, which has been plagued by piracy in the last few years, a spokesman for Nigeria's president said on Wednesday.  


Modern Piracy & International Shipping ... the Challenge Continues

Tom Bowman

Travelling by ship, whether for trade, exploration or war, has been one of the most important parts of human history. As the global economy progressed and developed, the importance of shipping skyrocketed. While the advent of the car and plane heralded new eras of transportation


India Court Jails 25 from 'Seaman Guard Ohio'

An Indian court on Monday sentenced crew members of a private American ship, including 25 foreigners, to five years in prison for illegal possession of arms in Indian waters in a verdict that could spark diplomatic tension. The crew, which included foreign nationals from Ukraine


Piracy Surges in South East Asia

Photo by EagleSpeak

 The surge of piracy in South-East Asia waters continues as ships passing the Straits of Malacca and Singapore are falling victim to acts of piracy, says Clyde & Co.   Whilst Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia operate anti-piracy patrols in the area, it has limited resources


Polish Sailors Kidnapped off Nigerian Coast Freed

The Polish crew of a cargo vessel kidnapped last month off the Nigerian coast are safe and on their way home, Poland's Prime Minister Beata Szydlo said on Tuesday.   "Everything ended happily. The sailors are safe and sound, we are glad that they are coming back to their families


Pirates Kidnap Four Seamen off Nigeria

Armed Pirates attack Photo AP

  On Monday, 19th October, armed pirates attacked and boarded a refrigerated cargo ship underway off the Niger Delta. They stole ship’s cash, destroyed equipment and kidnapped four crewmembers before escaping. Authorities have been notified


Vigilance Still Crucial in Indian Ocean

  Organisations representing the global shipping and oil industry have announced that the size of the ‘High Risk Area’ for piracy in the Indian Ocean has been reduced and issued new advice to merchant ship operators. This reduction to the High Risk Area is in response to the


Collective Effort Keeps Piracy at Bay, Risks Remain

Major General Martin Smith addresses senior shipping industry representatives earlier this week (Photo: Port2Port Maritime)

Though the maritime sector has seen a decline in Somali piracy in the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden, there is no room for complacency regarding the ongoing threat, says EU Naval Force Operation Commander, Major General Martin Smith MBE.  






 
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