Arabian Sea News

01 May 2020

Too Risky to Go Home, Crew of 'Clean' US Warship in Coronavirus Limbo

The aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) during a maritime domain awareness mission over the Strait of Gibraltar on April 7, 2020. (U.S. Navy photo by Juan S. Sua)

On any given day, the U.S. aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman can be found off the Atlantic coast of the United States, probably somewhere between Virginia and Florida. Its crew would love to come home to their families. But they can’t. They’re just too valuable right now.That’s because the Truman is a “clean” ship, free from the coronavirus thanks to a longer-than-expected deployment at sea that started in November. The deployment has kept its battle-ready 4,500 crew out of reach…

17 Apr 2020

Indian Fishermen, Caught Out by Virus Lockdown, Dock After Weeks at Sea

© Wojciech Wrzesień / Adobe Stock

Hundreds of exhausted Indian fishermen, who said they were refused entry at two ports after a nationwide lockdown was imposed to fight the new coronavirus, docked in the western state of Maharashtra on Friday after about a month at sea.The men were out in the Arabian Sea on March 24 when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 21-day lockdown, which has now been extended to May 3.They tried to dock at Nargol in the state of Gujarat to the north, but said that locals, fearful they were carrying the disease, stopped them from disembarking.

09 Mar 2020

Cochin Port Upgrades Vessel Traffic Management System

The Administration Building of the Cochin Port Trust, which houses the Wärtsilä VTMS control tower. (Photo: Wärtsilä)

The technology group Wärtsilä will upgrade its Vessel Traffic Management System (VTMS) installed in the Indian port of Cochin, bringing additional benefits such as improved traffic monitoring and control.The system was originally delivered in 2008, and the order with Wärtsilä to upgrade the system was placed in February 2020 by the Cochin Port Trust (CoPT). The upgrading project is scheduled for completion by the end of July 2020.According to Wärtsilä, the upgraded VTMS will enable…

18 Feb 2020

US Warship Seizes Suspected Iranian Weapons

The guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60) boarded a stateless dhow in the Arabian Sea and interdicted an illicit shipment of advanced weapons and weapon components intended for the Houthis in Yemen, February 9, 2020. (U.S. Navy photo by Michael H. Lehman)

A U.S. Navy warship seized weapons believed to be of Iranian “design and manufacture,” including 150 anti-tank guided missiles and three Iranian surface-to-air missiles, the American military said on Thursday.In a statement, the military said the guided-missile cruiser Normandy boarded a dhow, a traditional sailing vessel, in the Arabian Sea on Sunday.“The weapons seized include 150 ‘Dehlavieh’ anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM), which are Iranian-manufactured copies of Russian Kornet ATGMs…

02 Feb 2020

Japanese Warship to Patrol Oil Lifeline

File photo: The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer Takanami (DD 110), front, sails alongside the guided missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG 85) March 9, 2014, in the Pacific Ocean. (U.S. Navy photo by Chris Cavagnaro)

A Japanese destroyer left for the Gulf of Oman on Sunday amid simmering Middle East tension to guard sea lanes that supply nearly all the oil that powers the world's third-biggest economy."Thousands of Japanese ships ply those waters every year including vessels carrying nine tenths of our oil. It is Japan's lifeline," Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told the crew at Yokosuka naval base near Tokyo, before they cast off in a ceremony attended by 500 family members and representatives from the United States…

10 Jan 2020

Russian Navy Ship 'Aggressively Approached' U.S. Destroyer

Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Jack Aistrup
Navy Public Affairs Support Element East

A Russian navy ship "aggressively approached" a U.S. Navy destroyer in the North Arabian Sea on Thursday, the U.S. Navy's Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet said in a statement on Friday.The Fifth Fleet said the U.S. destroyer USS Farragut sounded five short blasts and requested the Russian ship alter course."The Russian ship initially refused but ultimately altered course and the two ships opened distance from one another," the statement said. (Reporting by Ghaida Ghantous; Writing by Tuqa Khalid; Editing by Catherine Evans)

30 Dec 2019

Salalah Port Breaks 4-M TEU Record

Image: Port of Salalah

Port of Salalah, the largest port in Oman, hit an all-time record container volume of 4-million TEUs in December 2019.Considering all services and volumes that were re-directed to other ports due to the impact of Cyclone Mekunu in 2018, the Port of Salalah has also achieved a 19% year-on-year volume growth, said a press note from the port, which is situated in the Dhofar Governorate, on the Arabian Sea which is on the northern part of the Indian Ocean.The concerted efforts of…

27 Dec 2019

Japan Sending Warship, Aircraft to Middle East

File Image: A Japanese naval asset. CREDIT: AdobeStock / © JP Aaron

Japan will send a warship and patrol planes to protect Japanese ships in the Middle East as the situation in the region, from which it sources nearly 90% of its crude oil imports, remains volatile, Japan's top government spokesman said on Friday.Under the plan approved by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet, a helicopter-equipped destroyer and two P-3C patrol planes will be dispatched for information-gathering aimed at ensuring safe passage for Japanese vessels through the region.If there are any emergencies…

23 Dec 2019

UK Navy Warship Captures $4 mln of Drugs in Gulf of Oman

Photo courtesy of Royal Navy

Britain's Royal Navy said on Monday one of its warships had helped to seize a batch of crystal meth worth more than 3.3 million pounds ($4.3 million) from smugglers in the Gulf of Oman.HMS Defender, a destroyer based at Portsmouth, southern England, sent a party to search a suspicious dhow as it conducted reconnaissance in the northern Arabian Sea.Royal marines discovered on the dhow 11 mailbag-sized sacks carrying drugs weighing 131 kg (288 lb) in total, the Royal Navy said in…

03 Sep 2019

Salalah Ports Sets Productivity Record

Image: APM Terminals

With an annual capacity of around 5 million TEU, the Port of Salalah set a new productivity record this month, delivering 412.97 Port Moves per Hour (PMPH) on vessel Cap San Tainaro. The Port handled 3,820 moves in a port stay of 9.25 hours.Oman’s major regional gateway port and transshipment hub, located on the Arabian Sea has recorded the highest productivity ever achieved in the region. Last month, an investment of USD 31 million in asset replacement and capacity improvements over the past year at the Port of Salalah paid off.Referencing improvements in standards of work…

29 Aug 2019

India's Ports on Alert for 'Underwater' Attacks

Visakhapatnam port is a second largest port by cargo handled in India. (Image Credit: AdobeStock / © SNEHIT)

India's two main ports said on Thursday they had been warned by the coastguard and intelligence officials that Pakistan-trained commandos have entered Indian waters to carry out underwater attacks on port facilities.The Mundra Port, run by Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd, and the state-owned Kandla Port had asked their employees and ship operators to be vigilant, port officials and the ports said in advisories seen by Reuters.Tensions between India and Pakistan have escalated since India revoked the special status of its portion of the Himalayan region of Kashmir on Aug.

09 Aug 2019

MSCI Advisory Strait of Hormuz Precautions

This revised advisory cancels U.S. Maritime Advisories 2019-004 and 2019-008.1. References: U.S. Maritime Alerts 2019-004A, 2019-003A, 2019-002A, and 2019-001A.2. Issue: Heightened military activity and increased political tensions in this region continue to pose serious threats to commercial vessels. Associated with these threats is a potential for miscalculation or misidentification that could lead to aggressive actions. Vessels operating in the Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, and Gulf of Oman may also encounter GPS interference, bridge-to-bridge communications spoofing, and/or other communications jamming with little to no warning.Since May 2019, the following maritime incidents have occurred in this region:Six attacks against commercial vessels (see U.S.

18 Jul 2019

U.S. Amphibious Group Patrolling Arabian Sea

Flight Ops on the USS Boxer (CREDIT: USN)

Aboard USS BOXER in the Arabian Sea, a U.S. Harrier fighter jet takes off from the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer in the Arabian Sea as an oil tanker passes, a nautical mile away.The patrol is "standard" but the situation - growing tension between the United States and Iran - is not.Soon after the roar of the Harrier fades, two combat helicopters and two unmistakable Osprey aircraft with their tiltable rotors land back on the flight deck."We want to make sure that we assure allies in the region and to ensure freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce…

12 Nov 2018

China to Develop Multi Billion Dollar Deep Sea Port In Myanmar

Photo by Xinhua

China and Myanmar are moving ahead with a China-backed deep-sea port project in Kyauk Phyu Special Economic Zone (SEZ) , 250 miles northwest of Yangon.The framework agreement was signed by Myanmar's Deputy Minister of Planning and Finance and Chairperson of the Management Committee of the Kyaukphyu SEZ U Set Aung and President of CITIC Group Chang Zhenming, stated Chinese state media.This is the third port in India’s vicinity. China is also developing deepwater strategic Gwadar port in Pakistan in the Arabian Sea which faces the Mumbai coast.

31 Dec 2018

Royal Austalian Navy Seizes Illegal Drug Shipments

Photo: © Commonwealth of Australia

Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Ballarat has seized more than 900 kilos of heroin worth approximately $279 million* during two boarding operations that took place 21–23 Dec 18 as part of Operation MANITOU.Ballarat conducted flag verification checks by boarding vessels of interest, under the direction of the Combined Maritime Forces’ (CMF) Combined Task Force (CTF) 150 in international waters in the Arabian Sea. The fishing vessels, known as dhows, were believed to be engaging in illegal activity.The boarding team discovered and seized illegal narcotics on both dhows.

12 Jun 2019

SAExploration Completes Ocean-Bottom Project

Pic: SAExploration

The geophysical services provider SAExploration Holdings successfully completed the largest shallow water ocean-bottom marine project in its history.Contracted to SAExploration by a major national oil company, the project, located in the Arabian Sea off the coast of India, utilized over 20 vessels, which included three ocean-bottom node deployment vessels and two seismic source vessels operating in dual source/simultaneous source mode.A total of 5,400 ocean-bottom nodes and in excess of 1…

06 Aug 2018

Saudi Arabia Resumes Oil Exports through Red Sea Lane

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia said on Saturday it has resumed all oil shipments through the strategic Red Sea shipping lane of Bab al-Mandeb.Saudi Arabia halted temporarily oil shipments through the lane on July 25 after attacks on two oil tankers by Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi movement.A statement by the Energy Ministry said shipments had resumed on Saturday."The decision to resume oil shipment through the strait of Bab al-Mandeb was made after the leadership of the coalition has taken necessary measures to protect the coalition states' ships…

24 Apr 2019

World Navies Report: Denmark

The Royal Danish navy frigate HDMS Peter Willemoes (F362) transits the Gulf of Aden. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Mario Coto)

Navies operate on a spectrum between deterrence and defense, to include offensive operation, support of foreign policy, and power projection to civil affair and humanitarian assistance and disaster response. Many have constabulary responsibilities, and it could be argued that, with the exception of the largest navies, most are more like a coast guard than a military force in their normal responsibilities.Every Navy is different. Yes, they all share similar challenges of acquisition…

14 Jun 2019

Analysis: Strait of Hormuz and the Risk of Escalation

© Peter Hermes Furian/Adobe Stock

The Strait of Hormuz, the narrow shipping lane between Iran and Oman named after the fabulously wealthy ancient kingdom of Ormus, has fascinated oil traders since the Iranian revolution in 1979. Iran has periodically threatened to close the strait to enemy shipping, while the United States and its allies have pledged to keep it open and maintain freedom of navigation, by force if necessary.The strait has become a symbolic flashpoint in the region-wide confrontation and indirect…

11 Jun 2019

India to Evacuate Thousands as Cyclone Nears West Coast

Indian authorities are preparing to evacuate 300,000 people along the western coast as a severe cyclone is expected to make landfall on Thursday morning in the state of Gujarat.Storm Vayu, which formed in the Arabian Sea, is likely to cross the Gujarat coast with gust speeds as high as 135 kmph (84 mph), the India Meteorological Department said in a statement.It also warned the cyclone could further delay the progress of the annual monsoon rains over the rest of India, as the storm was drawing rain clouds from over the sea.The arrival of the monsoons on the southern coast of Kerala was already about a week late this year.Gujarat Chief…

01 Jul 2019

MSCI Advisory: Regional Conflict and Piracy

Logo: MARAD

2019-007-Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Indian Ocean-Violence Due to Regional Conflict and PiracyDescription:This revised advisory cancels U.S. Maritime Advisory 2018-0151. References: (a) U.S. Maritime Alerts 2018-001A, 2018-002A, 2018-002B, 2018-005A, and 2018-007A2. Issues: Regional conflict and piracy threats continue to pose potential risks to commercial vessels operating in the above listed geographic areas.3. Conflict in Yemen continues to pose potential risk to U.S.

10 Jul 2019

US: Military Coalition Should Safeguard Gulf

A U.S. Navy (MSC) fleet oiler underway. (CREDIT: USN)

The United States hopes to enlist allies over the next two weeks or so in a military coalition to safeguard strategic waters off Iran and Yemen, where Washington blames Iran and Iran-aligned fighters for attacks, the top U.S. general said on Tuesday.Under the plan, which has only been finalized in recent days, the United States would provide command ships and lead surveillance efforts for the military coalition. Allies would patrol waters near those U.S. command ships and escort commercial vessels with their nation's flags.Marine General Joseph Dunford…

11 Jul 2019

Britain Foils Iranian Attempt to Block Tanker

File Image: A UK Navy warship on patrol (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Peter Cripps)

Three Iranian vessels tried to block a BP-operated tanker passing through the Strait of Hormuz but backed off when confronted by a Royal Navy warship, the UK government said on Thursday.Britain urged Iran to "de-escalate the situation in the region" after the British Heritage, a Suezmax oil tanker operated by BP under an Isle of Man flag, was approached."HMS Montrose was forced to position herself between the Iranian vessels and British Heritage and issue verbal warnings to the Iranian vessels…

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