ICS Reports on Lessons from Somali Piracy

Posted by Michelle Howard
Monday, January 13, 2014
Peter Hinchliffe

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), a global trade association for shipowners, has issued a paper drawing upon the international shipping industry’s experience of Somali-based piracy during the period 2007 to 2013.

“The intention is to identify lessons learned in order to shape future policy responses, wherever in the world they might be needed,” explained ICS Secretary General, Peter Hinchliffe.

The ICS paper has been submitted to the International Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (which was established in response to a United Nations Security Council Resolution) and by all accounts the ICS paper has been well received by governments.

ICS has produced its paper following a dramatic reduction in the number of successful attacks against ships by Somali pirates, currently at a five-year low thanks to the combined success of sustained compliance with industry Best Management Practices (BMP), the use of private maritime security companies, the activity of military assets and new capacity building initiatives ashore.

Despite this, it remains the case that the pirates are active and retain the capacity to attack far into the Indian Ocean. ICS therefore continues to emphasize that it is premature to conclude that the crisis is over, with seafarers still held hostage in Somalia, some of whom have now been in captivity for three years.

In 2013, there were at least 13 reported incidents involving Somali pirates including two hijackings. ICS stresses that adherence to the industry’s latest Best Management Practices (BMP 4) and, where necessary, the deployment of private armed guards, continue to be vital self-protective measures. The maintenance of current levels of military protection provided by a global coalition of governments in the Indian Ocean is also considered to be vital.

The ICS paper explains the significant challenges the shipping industry has faced in responding to the crisis in the Indian Ocean, which escalated dramatically in 2007.

This included getting the initial attention of governments and making them appreciate the scale of the crisis that was making a vast and strategically vital area of the Indian Ocean, including major trade lanes, a virtual ‘no go’ area to merchant shipping.

It also involved raising awareness in the mainstream news media, and then seeking to maintain this throughout the course of the crisis.

The ICS paper also highlights the importance of clarifying the rights and obligations of sovereign nations to address piracy (which were complicated by the breakdown of Somalia as a functioning State) and of the need to engage with military authorities and to persuade them that the prevention of piracy/hostage taking has a most important strategic and humanitarian function that should not be dismissed as mere ‘low level’ law enforcement.

“It was particularly important to foster an understanding that protection against pirate attacks was a shared responsibility in which both the military and the industry have to play their parts,” said Peter Hinchliffe.

The ICS paper also explores the challenges of:

  •  Developing and disseminating appropriate and acceptable Best Management Practice (BMP) recommendations on preventative measures to be taken by shipping companies, ships and crews;
  •  Maintaining constant pressure on shipping companies and ships to sustain BMP compliance at the highest possible level;
  •  Responding to the legal and practical challenges associated with the capture and prosecution of piracy suspects;
  •  Responding to the legal and practical challenges created by the employment of private armed guards;
  •  Responding to the humanitarian challenge of thousands of seafarers left traumatized by the experience of being held hostage for several months (years in some cases) prior to release;
  •  Addressing the legal and moral dilemma created by the necessity for shipping companies and their insurers to make ransom payments;
  •  Addressing the challenges of promoting capacity building ashore and the reconstruction of civil society; and
  •  Seeking to address the crisis in an appropriate but proportionate manner that recognized it was likely to continue for several years while avoiding a situation in which the threat presented by pirates was regarded as ‘normal’ or that some of the necessarily extreme measures adopted, such as the use of armed guards, did not become institutionalized.


ICS hopes that all stakeholders in counter-piracy operations — whether political, military, shipping and security industries or media —will bear in mind the lessons identified in dealing with the issue of piracy in the Indian Ocean. ICS believes the core lesson of responding to criminality robustly and without delay will be more easily delivered in the future if these basic lessons are kept readily to hand.
 

Maritime Reporter October 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Support for Sulphur Regulation Enforcement Gathers Momentum

Trident Alliance, the shipping industry initiative for robust enforcement of maritime sulphur regulations, broadens its platform as some of Germany’s and Denmark’s

High Seas Becoming Less Secure

Despite the significant reduction in piracy attacks over the last few years it is now widely accepted by the maritime community that the safety of the High Seas

Kleven Wins New Yacht Contract

Norwegian ship builder Kleven has secured a new contract for a high specification, 116-metre long Expedition Support Vessel. The order is placed by Mr Graeme Hart,

Legal

Support for Sulphur Regulation Enforcement Gathers Momentum

Trident Alliance, the shipping industry initiative for robust enforcement of maritime sulphur regulations, broadens its platform as some of Germany’s and Denmark’s

High Seas Becoming Less Secure

Despite the significant reduction in piracy attacks over the last few years it is now widely accepted by the maritime community that the safety of the High Seas

EU Regulation on CO2 Reporting a Setback for ICS Efforts

The global trade association for shipowners – the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) – is disappointed and concerned that the European Union is about to

Offshore

Wärtsilä Integrated Solutions for Maersk's AHTS Vessels

A new series of six Anchor Handling Tug Supply vessels to be built at the Kleven Verft AS in Norway for the Danish based Maersk Supply Service A/S - part of the A.

Fourth Rig Delivered to Perforadora Central

Keppel AmFELS LLC, a wholly owned US subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd (Keppel O&M), has delivered the jackup rig, Coatzacoalcos, to Mexico’s Central Panuco S.

Woodside to Pick up Moroccan Acreage

Woodside advises that it has entered into a contract for an exclusive Reconnaissance Licence (RL) with the Office National des Hydrocarbures et des Mines, the

Navy

NAVCENT Commander Recognizes Journey of Hope Sailors

Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet, Combined Maritime Forces, Vice Adm. John. W. Miller, recognized the accomplishments of three special-needs sailors from the Kuwaiti ship,

Subsea Defense & the Changing Paradigm of Submarine Programs

Technology and dynamic mission profiles have driven change in the defense industry, Hydro Group Plc Managing Director Doug Whyte, explores the changing paradigm of submarine programs,

Rolls-Royce Wins US Marine Corps Contract

Rolls-Royce has been awarded a new, two-year contract to provide aftermarket engine support for the US Marine Corps and Air Force V-22 fleets, which provides

Maritime Security

High Seas Becoming Less Secure

Despite the significant reduction in piracy attacks over the last few years it is now widely accepted by the maritime community that the safety of the High Seas

Subsea Defense & the Changing Paradigm of Submarine Programs

Technology and dynamic mission profiles have driven change in the defense industry, Hydro Group Plc Managing Director Doug Whyte, explores the changing paradigm of submarine programs,

Bollinger Delivers 11th FRC to the US Coast Guard

Bollinger Shipyards, Inc. has delivered the William Trump, the 11th Fast Response Cutter (FRC) to the United States Coast Guard.   The announcement was made by Bollinger Chief Operating Officer,

Coast Guard

USCG Suspend Search for Crabber Near Anacortes, Wash.

The Coast Guard has suspended the search for a crabber reported overdue near Anacortes, Wednesday. Dean Harvey, 48, of Bremerton, remains missing. Search

Bollinger Delivers 11th FRC to the US Coast Guard

Bollinger Shipyards, Inc. has delivered the William Trump, the 11th Fast Response Cutter (FRC) to the United States Coast Guard.   The announcement was made by Bollinger Chief Operating Officer,

The Legal Consequences of 46 CFR Subchapter “M”

As the holiday season and the end of another year quickly approaches, the towing industry patiently waits for the Coast Guard to finalize the long-awaited towing vessel inspection rule.

Maritime Safety

High Seas Becoming Less Secure

Despite the significant reduction in piracy attacks over the last few years it is now widely accepted by the maritime community that the safety of the High Seas

USCG Suspend Search for Crabber Near Anacortes, Wash.

The Coast Guard has suspended the search for a crabber reported overdue near Anacortes, Wednesday. Dean Harvey, 48, of Bremerton, remains missing. Search

W&O, LESER Partner to Deliver Safety Relief Valves

W&O, a global supplier to the marine and upstream oil and gas markets for pipe, valves and fittings, valve automation and engineered solutions, has partnered with

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Naval Architecture Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.3248 sec (3 req/sec)