Nigeria: Tackling Resurgence of Militancy, Sea Robbery

Chiemelie Ezeobi writes that the recently flagged off Exercise Calm Waters 11 has recorded some gains in tackling the resurgence of militancy and sea robbery off Nigerian waters, up to the Exclusive Economic Zone

Violent attacks against ships and their crews have risen in 2020, with global figure of 77 seafarers taken hostage or kidnapped for ransom since January. This was disclosed by the ICC International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) latest piracy report.

According to the bureau, the Gulf of Guinea (GoG), off West Africa is increasingly dangerous for commercial shipping, accounting for just over 90 per cent of maritime kidnappings worldwide. Meanwhile ship hijackings are at their lowest since 1993.

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Source: allafrica.com

Pirates of the Bay of Campeche: Amateurs at work

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The first thing to realize when considering any aspect of lawlessness in Mexico, including in Mexican and adjacent waters, is that Mexico is a thoroughly corrupt country.

The corruption is historic, endemic and permeates every aspect of Mexican life. This corruption is directly responsible for the lawlessness that has allowed criminal gangs of all stripes to take over daily life in Mexico, and now they have extended their range to offshore oil installations.

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Source: workboat.com

Yaounde Code of Conduct taking shape in the Gulf of Guinea

Security professionals in the Gulf of Guinea know that if they want to spot criminals in the open water, the best place to look is along a maritime border.

Historically, this has been the space where pirates, illegal fishermen and traffickers felt safest knowing that, if confronted, they could flee into another country’s waters.

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Source: defenceweb.co.za

Nigeria: Navy Deploys Eight Ships, Two Helicopters to Tackle Insecurity in Nigerian Waters

The Nigerian Navy yesterday disclosed that it has deployed eight of its warships and two fighter jets to tackle cases of insecurity in the country’s territorial waters.

It said the deployment is part of a 30-day sea operations tagged: ‘Okun Alaafia II’, a Yoruba word for ‘calm water’ II, which it said is aimed at checking illegalities around the country’s waters.

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Source: allafrica.com

Piracy: Institute urges FG to re-engage Tompolo’s company

He hinged the appeal on the recent acquittal of Chief Government Ekpemupolo and Capt. Enusoh Warredi of charges of corruption and seizure of their maritime security assets, including the surveillance and combat vessels, belonging to GWSV.

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Source: thenewsnigeria.com.ng

Amid a Pandemic, the Jolly Roger Flies High

Asia, West Africa and the Americas experience upticks in naval gang attacks as the coronavirus pandemic stirs fears of increasing piracy.

By Kevin Drew

Late at night in the Singapore Strait, the five men quietly pulled their small speedboat alongside the bulk cargo vessel Vega Aquarius and climbed aboard the much larger ship. The men, armed with knives, were noticed by an on-duty crewman while they were on the stern of the deck.

The men rushed the crewman, who managed to escape after his cell phone was seized. Alarms were raised throughout the ship, deck lights came on and the ship’s full crew was mustered. A ship-wide search failed to find the thieves but revealed that two sets of breathing apparatus were stolen. The attacked seaman sustained minor head injuries.

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Source: usnews.com

Call grows to flag Mexico’s Gulf as high-risk

By Rebecca Conan

Mexico’s Campeche sound should be declared a high-risk area by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) amid rising numbers of armed attacks on oil and natural gas vessels and platforms, maritime experts say.

“One of the main reasons for the increase in these attacks is weak ocean governance and the non-existence of maritime security policy,” Adriana Avila, academic at the World Maritime University, said in presenting her research today on the resurgence of organized crime in the Gulf of Mexico.

Avila, with Dimitrios Dalaklis, documented 14 cases of armed attacks against vessels or marine platforms during the first four months of 2020, with just three of those reported to international maritime agencies.

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Source: argusmedia.com

10 Suspected Pirates Accused Of Hijacking Vessel Denied Bail

Adeshola Soyele

The Federal High Court in Lagos has refused to grant bail to 10 suspected pirates accused of hijacking a fishing vessel, FV Hai Lu Feng II, belonging to Haina Fishing Company.

Justice Ayokunle Faji denied them bail on Wednesday on the ground that the gravity of the charge against them bordered on the threat to national security.

He also considered the punishments for the alleged crimes, which stipulates a life sentence or at least a fine of not less than N50 million and restitution, if found guilty under the Suppression of Piracy and other Maritime Offences Act of 2019.

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Source: channelstv.com

Offshore Supply Vessel Attacked off the Coast of Mexico

An offshore supply vessel has reportedly been attached in the waters near the Mexican state of Veracruz. This latest attack highlights the increasing dangers for seafarers in the Bay of Campeche area of the southern Gulf of Mexico.

Dryad Global is reported that on July 24 the Mexican-flagged offshore supply vessel the Natalie was boarded. The incident took place overnight with the vessel be boarded under the cover of darkness. At the time of the attack, the supply vessel was approximately 12 nautical miles northeast of Coatzacoalcos, Mexico. The Natalie is believed to be currently under the management of Cuxhavener Schiffahrtskontor (CSK) GmbH & Co., a shipping and port agency based in Cuxhaven, Germany.

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Source: maritime-executive.com

NN Launches Operation ‘Bekan Mmon 2’ In C/ River

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The Nigerian Navy at the weekend in Calabar flagged off “Operation Bekan Mmon two” in order to keep the Calabar waterways (maritime environment) peaceful and safe from criminal activities which may include sea robbery, oil bunkering, hostage taking and others for economic prosperity of the country.

Speaking at the navy jetty, Headquarters of Eastern Naval Command Nigerian Navy Calabar during the flag off ceremony of “Operation ‘Bekan Mmon two” (come to the water), Rear Admiral David Adeniran, stated that with launching of the operation, crimes occurring along the maritime environment would become a thing of the past as the navy personnel drafted for the operation are going to ensure that every criminal element troubling people who travel through the waterways would become a thing of the past.

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Source: leadership.ng