ICC published a report on piracy and armed robbery in the timeframe from January 1 to June 30, 2019. Based on the report, the seas circling West Africa are the most dangerous for piracy, as of the 75 seafarers taken hostage onboard or kidnapped for ransom worldwide so far this year, 62 were captured in the Gulf of Guinea – off the coasts of Nigeria, Guinea, Togo, Benin and Cameroon.
Turning the tide of piracy and attacks is not a difficult operation in terms of military and law enforcement, but the will to act and get both local and international involvement and cooperation may be, said Jakob P. Larsen, BIMCO Head of Maritime Security.
The Maritime Administration of the Republic of Marshall Islands issued a marine notice concerning vessels sailing in Indonesian waters and intend to anchor in these areas. Also, vessels should operate at Security Level 2, maintain strict anti-piracy watch and measures, and report all security incidents and suspicious sightings to the local authorities and the IMB PRC.
As a tanker was anchored at Bonny Outer Anchorage, Nigeria, on April 19, pirates boarded the ship. After that, they kidnapped six of the crew members and escaped. According to IMB, the rest of the crew are reported to be safe, while the Nigerian navy was notified and investigations are ongoing.
Four persons in a speed boat armed with automatic weapons approached and boarded an anchored product tanker, on April 15, at Bonny River Inner Anchorage, Nigeria. Fires were shot, with the pirates eventually retreating and escaping. One guard was injured during the shooting and was given first aid by the crew. The remaining crew are reported to be safe.
The International Chamber of Commerce International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) published its report for the first quarter of 2019, revealing less incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships than the first three months of 2018. During the first quarter of 2019, IMB reported 38 incidents of piracy and armed robbery at sea, which are 28 less incidents than the first quarter of 2018, which stood at 66.
Three robbers armed with knives boarded a crude oil tanker which was anchored at Jose Terminal Anchorage, Venezuela, in the early morning hours of Thursday, 21st March, according to data provided by the IMB Piracy reporting centre.
Two speed boats with 16 armed persons onboard chased and fired upon an offshore supply vessel, while the vessel was sailing around 30 nautical miles southwest of Bonny Island, Nigeria. Crew raised the alarm, while the vessel increased speed and commenced evasive manoeuvres.
Pirates armed with machine guns in two speed boats approached an offshore support vessel underway on March 9, off Brass, Nigeria, as IMB reports. The pirates boarded the ship, stole crew’s belongings and kidnapped five men. What is more, there are reports that one Nigerian Navy armed guard was killed during exchange of fire.
A robber attacked and stole fuel from a bulk carrier that was anchored at China’s Caofeidian Anchorage, on February 10. Namely, the duty officer on board the ship notice that a hose was connected from a tank. The alarm was raised and the robber lowered the hose and escaped. It was reported that DO had been stolen and the incident was reported to VTS Caofeidian.
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