Marine Link
Thursday, March 22, 2018

Arabian Sea News

Another Maersk Containership Catches Fire

File photo: Maersk Line

U.S. flagged containership Maersk Kensington reported a fire in a cargo hold while en route from Salalah, Oman toward Suez. The fire is the second reported aboard a Maersk vessel this month. The fire has been contained and all 26 crew members are reported safe and accounted for, according to A.P. Moller-Maersk. The vessel is carrying 3,518 containers (corresponding to 5,616 TEU) and is currently at anchor outside the port of Salalah where it is receiving assistance from shore. The 6,188 TEU Maersk Kensington is owned and operated by Maersk’s U.S. subsidiary Maersk Line, Limited (MLL).

Indian Navy Plane Thwarts Pirate Attack

P-8I. Photo: Indian Navy

The Indian Navy, with the help of its long-range anti-submarine warfare aircraft, has thwarted a "piracy" attempt in the Western Arabian Sea, 800 nautical miles off Mumbai, targeted at a merchant vessel. According to a report in the Times of India, the P-8I, based at the naval air station INS Rajali at Arakkonam in Tamil Nadu, was on a routine surveillance mission over the Arabian Sea when it received distress calls from the merchant vessel, the Malta-flagged MV Sezai Selah, on the international Channel 16 distress radio on April 15.

Aussie Navy Seizes eight tonnes Hashish

Parcels of narcotics seized by HMAS Warramunga lay on the upper deck of a vessel as part of an illicit cargo seizure during a narcotics interdiction operation Photo Royal Australian Navy

The crew of Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Warramunga has intercepted two vessels and seized approximately eight tonnes of hashish valued at approximately $400 million during operations in international waters of the Arabian Sea. Warramunga has now seized 19.5 tonnes of hashish and 1.5 tonnes of heroin, valued in excess of $1.43 billion* since deploying to the Middle East in November 2017. On 3 March Warramunga’s Seahawk helicopter crew detected a vessel of interest during surveillance operations. A boarding party searched the vessel, uncovering 4.1 tonnes of illicit cargo.

Pirates Low Profile in Monsoon Season

During the reporting period 7 – 13, June 2012, the number of piracy incidents in the High Risk Area (HRA) has remained low, with no incidents reported. Due to the South-West monsoon between June and September, sea conditions in the HRA are expected to be generally unfavourable for small boats. Pirate Activity Groups (PAG) will likely continue to focus their limited efforts in the Northern Arabian Sea (NAS), Gulf of Oman (GOO) as well as in the Gulf of Aden (GOA) and South Red Sea (SRS). There have been no significant changes over the past week. Masters are advised that fishing activity is expected to continue and likely increase in this area over the next few months. There have been no significant changes over last week in this region.

NIMA Issues Military Operations Advisory

The U.S. National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) issued a Special Advisory stating that coalition naval forces are conducting military operations in waters of the eastern Mediterranean Sea, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Arabian Gulf. All vessels in these waters are urged to keep a safe distance away from military vessels and to clearly identify themselves so as to avoid the inadvertent use of force. Note use of the term military operations rather than military exercises. Source: HK Law

Pirates Board SuezMax Oil Tanker off Somalli Coast

Operators Dynacom Tanker Management report their motor tanker 'Smyrni' hijacked by pirates in the Arabian Sea At approximately 1115 UTC on 10 May, 2012, an oil tanker managed by Dynacom Tankers Management Ltd. was reported hijacked while it was transiting the Arabian Sea. The Liberian-flagged Tanker, the M/T SMYRNI, is carrying a cargo of 135,000 MT of crude oil. The operators say that no communications have been received from the ship since the ship was boarded. Dynacom Tanker Management's top priorities are the safe return of the ship and crew and the integrity of the cargo and they have notified all relevant authorities. This is the largest ship to be seized in over a year.  

Indian Sub Collides with Ship

According to NDTV, an Indian Navy Submarine called Sindhughosh collided with a merchant navy ship in the Arabian Sea. The submarine was trying to surface in Arabian sea near 300 km north of Mumbai. Sindhughosh was on a routine fleet-level war game exercise when the collision occurred and slightly damaged its fin. There were about 60 crew members on board and apparently it made back to the base in Mumbai without any help. Its escape is termed miraculous since submarines normally sink on such occasions. Navy officials are unwilling to confirm or deny the incident. Source: NDTV

One Dead after Maersk Line Vessel Catches Fire

(Photo: Indian Coast Guard)

A crew member died and four others went missing after fire broke out on a new Maersk Line container vessel in the Arabian Sea, the company said. The vessel caught fire at around 1520 GMT on Tuesday, about 900 nautical miles southeast of Salalah, Oman, the world's biggest container shipping company said in a statement. Twenty-three crew members were rescued but one of them, a Thai national, died on Wednesday, added Maersk. "His health condition drastically deteriorated ... due to the injuries sustained in connection to the fire," said Maersk, a unit of Danish shipping firm A.P.

Maritime Intelligence Agency Counsels Against Pirate Complacency

Dryad Operations Room:Photo credit Dryad Maritime

Dryad Maritime predicts that, despite industry optimism of 2012, the end of the South West monsoon season will see the resumption of pirate attacks. Pirate operatives have awoken from their hibernation to venture forth from safe havens and launch long-range mothership-enabled pirate operations with the first confirmed attack in the Arabian Sea earlier this week. Dryad Maritime’s combination of monitoring and regular observation of environmental conditions has confirmed that, over recent weeks…

Tugboats Robbed in Arabian Sea

Pirates had a field day with mechanical and electrical equipment from two out-of-order tugboats that were anchored off the coast of the Arabian Sea near Manora Island. On Feb 24, the Docks Police registered an FIR against four masked men, who robbed the two tugboats. The police said that FIR No 36/06 was registered on the complaint of Ahsan Ali, who is a manager with Old Port (Pvt) Ltd, the company, which owns the tugboats. The Daily Times reported that Ali informed the police that the four men approached his company's boats in two separate vessels. They took the guards stationed at the tugboats hostage and loaded the stuff into their boats. The names of the tugboats are Jawa and Jawa Bosar. The pirates took away motors, some tools and copper and scrap.

OGDCL to Undertake Offshore Exploration in Arabian Sea

After successful onshore oil and gas exploration, the Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) will soon undertake offshore oil and gas exploration in the Arabian Sea, Managing Director of the Company, Arshad Nasar recently indicated. For this purpose, an exploration license with government holdings and petroleum production sharing agreement with OGDCL has been signed by the government over a block covering an area of 1,492 square kilometres located in the Arabian Sea. In an interview, the MD said the company will invest an amount of $1.14m during the first two years of the initial term of the license. Nasar said the company has succeeded to spud 50 wells last year and is 100 percent owner in 28 exploration blocks.

Tenth Successful Interdiction for HMAS Warramunga

Photo: Australian Government

HMAS Warramunga’s crew has seized record amounts of narcotics on Operation Manitou following their latest interdiction. In the latest haul, the crew of the Royal Australian Navy frigate seized approximately 132 kilograms of heroin valued at almost $40 million while patrolling international waters of the Arabian Sea on 6 March 2018. The illegal narcotics interdiction is Warramunga’s third seizure in the past seven days having also seized in excess of eight tonnes of hashish from two vessels just days earlier.

Navy Rescues 20 from Pirates

The Indian Navy and the Coast Guard reportedly intercepted a vessel used by Somali pirates, 200 miles off Kochi in the Arabian Sea, following a joint operation. They rescued 20 fishermen from Thailand and Myanmar, held hostage on board the vessel. They also rescued 15 pirates who jumped into the sea during the operation and took them into custody. The vessel, Prantalay, belonged to Thai fishermen. It was hijacked by the pirates in April 2010. (Source: The Times of India

Eye on the Navy

April 1, 2009, a landing craft air cushion from Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 5 leaves a beach during an exercise near Camp Lemonier, Djibouti. ACU-5 is currently assigned to the USS Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group supporting Combined Task Force-151 (CTF-151), a multinational task force conducting counter-piracy operations to detect and deter piracy in and around the Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Red Sea. (US Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jesse B. Awalt/Released)

Indian Navy Thwarts Attack on Chinese Vessel

According to a report from The Times of India, the Indian Navy responded to a distress call from a Chinese merchant vessel, the Fucheng, under attack by pirates in the Arabian Sea around 450 nautical miles west off the Karwar coast on May 5. An Indian Navy Tupolev-142M naval patrol aircraft hovered near the Chinese vessel making the pirates flee.   (Source: The Times of India)

US Senior Aircraft Carrier for Final Deployment

USS Enterprise: Photo USN

USS Enterprise sails out from Norfolk, Va. soon for final overseas deployment The 50-year-old flattop, built across the Hampton Roads waterway at Newport News Shipbuilding, will lead a carrier strike group eastward to conduct operations in the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation — essentially, the Persian Gulf, north Arabian Sea and the Mediterranean.

Eye on the Fleet

Sailors assigned to the amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD-50) perform an operational test on a 13-meter rigid hull inflatable boat in the Arabian Sea on Jan. 28, 2009. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Charles Panter/Released)

Oman, Pakistan Sign Marine Border Agreement

Oman's Foreign Affairs Minister Youssef bin Alawi bin Abdullah and his Pakistani counterpart Abdul Sattar signed a maritime border agreement in the Omani capital last Monday. The border pact apparently demarcated around 146 nautical miles of territorial water. Oman and Pakistan both have shorelines on the Arabian Sea. Oman recently ratified a border pact outlining most of the Arab state's border with the United Arab Emirates.

MV Irene SL Released by Pirates

Photo courtesy EU NAVFOR

The Very Large Crude Carrier MV Irene SL was released from pirate control on 7 April 2011.  The Greek flagged and owned vessel was pirated on the 9 February, approximately 350 nautical miles South East of Muscat in the North Arabian Sea. The vessel and her crew of 25 are believed to be making for a safe port. The crew members are from Greek, Georgia and Philippines. According to the owner all the crew members are safe and in good health.  

S. Korea Pledges to Protect Ships from Piracy

According to a Jan. 17 report from Yonhap, South Korea condemned piracy and pledged to take better measures to protect its ships from the "unacceptable" act after Somali pirates were suspected of seizing a cargo ship over the weekend. On Saturday, Jan. 15, an 11,500-ton South Korean chemical freighter, the Samho Jewelry, was hijacked in the Arabian Sea as the ship was en route to Sri Lanka from the United Arab Emirates with 21 crew members aboard. (Source: Yonhap)  

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). Prudent and timely application of BMP can make the important difference of being approached, attacked, or being pirated. On 22 December a suspicious approach by two skiffs was reported in the Central Arabian Sea in the vicinity of 1122N 06333E.

USCG Special Statement for Yachts, Somalia Piracy

The International Superyacht Society (ISS) received the following communication from CDR David G. McClellan, Chief, Prevention Operations Department, USCG Sector Miami. He has that this message be distributed to all mariners. This is critical information for persons either planning or knowing parties planning to sail in the area that transverses the seas off the Coast of Somalia in the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea South to the Mozambique Channel and East to the coast of India. Per CDR McClellan, Internet release is authorized. 1. ON 18 FEB 11, A U.S. REGISTERED SAILING VESSEL WITH 4 US CITIZENS ON BOARD WAS HIJACKED BY SOMALI PIRATES IN THE ARABIAN SEA, 282NM SE OF SUR, OMAN. DURING NEGOTIATIONS FOR RELEASE OF THE VESSEL, THE 4 US CITIZENS ONBOARD WERE KILLED.

Coalition Leadership Meets Aboard John C. Stennis

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) conducts operations in the Arabian Sea. The John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group is on regularly scheduled deployments in support of Maritime Security Operations (MSO). MSO help set the conditions for security and stability, as well as aid counter-terrorism and security efforts to regional nations. U.S. Senior leaders from the French Navy Ship (FNS) Charles de Gaulle (R 91) arrived aboard USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) March 16 to establish a foundation for further professional interaction and combined operations between the two navies. Commander Task Force 473 French Rear Adm. Xavier Magne and 15 other French officers from Charles de Gaulle met with their John C.

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