Two incidents of armed robbery against ships in Asia, one CAT 3 incident and one CAT 4 incident, were reported to ReCAAP ISC.
he CAT 31 incident occurred on board an oil/chemical/gas tanker while anchored at Kandla Anchorage, India. Several items were reported stolen during the incident.
The CAT 42 incident occurred to a barge while being towed off Pulau Sambu, Indonesia. In the incident, no item was stolen; and two perpetrators on board a small boat were apprehended by the Indonesian authorities.
The crew members in both incidents were safe.
Downgrading of threat level
The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), after careful consideration of inputs from stakeholders and counterparts with vital involvement in securing the Sulu-Celebes Seas maritime security measure, recommends the downgrading of the threat on the ‘Abduction of Crew for ransom in the Sulu-Celebes Seas’ from ‘POTENTIALLY HIGH’ to ‘MODERATE’.
The MODERATE threat level implies that ‘Incidents are possible to occur but are relatively less severe in nature’.
As the threat of abduction of crew in the Sulu-Celebes Seas has diminished since January 2020 due to successful military operations and robust law enforcement initiatives, the ReCAAP ISC updates its Advisory to all ships to consider re-route from the area as an option based on its prerogative.
For ships transiting the area, the ship masters and crew are strongly encouraged to exercise extra vigilance and report all incidents immediately to the Operation Centres of the Philippines and Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) of Malaysia.
Ship master and crew are to report all incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships to the nearest coastal State and flag State, exercise vigilance and adopt appropriate preventive measures taking reference from the Regional Guide 2 to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia