A tanker with 22 Indian crew and 13,500 tons of gasoline onboard is missing in the Gulf of Guinea since Friday, 2 February. The ‘Marine Express’ tanker, operated by Hong Kong-based Anglo-Eastern, was last seen in Benin’s waters at 3:30 a.m., after which contact was lost.
Two robbers armed with knives boarded a bulk carrier, while anchored at Godau Port, Vietnam, on 31st of January, according to data provided by IMB. The robbers took the bosun hostage, threatened and injured him with a knife and then tied him up.
During the period of 23 to 29 January 2018, two incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships were reported to the ReCAAP ISC. The first incident involves the petroleum product tanker ‘Ocean Mars’ in Indonesia, and the second one concerns the tanker ‘Ocean 1’ while sailing off Alang.
USNI news informed that the Iranian drones in the Persian Gulf and other critical waterways around the Middle East, conducting surveillance flights close to US warships crossing the Strait of Hormuz and operating around the region, have increased. Overall, 14 unsafe and unprofessional interactions were reported in 2017 and 36 in 2016.
The Colombian Navy informed that it managed to prevent the transport of drugs which were found onboard a merchant ship, sailing in the Caribbean, in which unauthorized persons and drugs were detected. The authorities discovered 185 kilos of cocaine. After that the intruders were detained.
The guidance highlights the use of the Maritime Security Transit Corridor, the registration with MSCHOA and reporting to UKMTO, as well as reviewing and updating risk assessments and plans to include new threats.
Two Indonesian fishermen abducted by Abu Sayyaf terrorist group more than a year ago were released last Friday and were handed over from the Indonesian Foreign Affairs Ministry to their families. The two men were kidnapped on 5 November 2016, while sailing in Malaysia’s waters of Sabah.
A merchant vessel was approached by pirates on a mother ship on the evening of Sunday, 21 January, in the Gulf of Aden, 90 nm South East of Mukallah, according to the maritime security company LSS-SAPU. The involved ship is said to be the Panama-flagged cement carrier ‘NACC Valbella’.
The first incident occurred on January 6 2018, in the Southern Red Sea. Three separate merchant vessels were approached by three small boats, each with up to six armed men aboard. The second incident took place on January 9, 2018, in the Ban El Mandeb Strait. A merchant vessel was approached by two small boats.
On 23 January 2018, the Dutch House of Representatives deals with the Merchant Navy Protection Act. The proposal allows the hiring of private security, in case a Vessel Protection Detachment of the armed forces is not possible, and concerns only the waters near Somalia, which is considered as a High Risk Area.
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