ReCAAP ISC: Piracy & Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia (25-31 Oct 2022)

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One CAT 4 incident of armed robbery against ships in Asia was reported to ReCAAP ISC.

The incident occurred on board a general cargo ship while anchored at Panjang Anchorage, Indonesia. An unknown number of perpetrators were suspected to have had boarded the ship through the poop deck going to the engine room entrance. All crew members were safe and several engine spares were reported stolen.

Areas of concern 

The Centre advises ships to continue to exercise enhanced vigilance when transiting areas of concern, including the Singapore Strait and the Sulu-Celebes Seas; and littoral States to increase patrols and enforcement in these areas.

Situation of crew abduction 

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’.

Update of ReCAAP ISC Advisory

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 immediately to the Operation Centres of the Philippines and Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) of Malaysia.

Recommendations

Ship master and crew 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.

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Source: ReCAAP ISC

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