China raises attack alert in Malacca Strait to highest level

Shipping companies are asked by authorities in Beijing to increase the security level on ships transiting the Strait of Malacca, one of the world’s busiest waterways. Cosco Shipping’s tanker unit has warned its staff about possible attacks from some Indonesian gangs

Cichen Shen

The raising of the threat level for Chinese-flagged vessels has been unexpected, particularly as the regional dynamics within and surrounding the Malacca Strait are stable’ — maritime security intelligence company Dryad Global

BEIJING has raised the security level on Chinese-flagged vessels transiting the Straits of Malacca, according to documents seen by Lloyd’s List.

Shipping companies have been advised to implement Security Level 3 — the highest state of alertness under the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code — effective from 2200hrs local time July 2, the Ministry of Transport said in a notification.

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Source: lloydslist.maritimeintelligence.informa.com

Curfew in ESSZone extended until July 10

KOTA KINABALU: Curfew in the waters off seven districts in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZone) which ends tomorrow, has been extended until July 10.

Sabah police commissioner Datuk Omar Mammah in a statement today said the curfew from 6pm to 6am covers the waters of Tawau, Semporna, Kunak, Lahad Datu, Kinabatangan, Sandakan and Beluran.

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Source: thesundaily.my

Eight men held in connection with kidnapping of fishermen in Lahad Datu, says CID Chief

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): Eight men have been arrested to help in investigations into the kidnapping of 10 Bajau Laut fishermen (sea gypsies) in Felda waters in Lahad Datu, Sabah on Tuesday (June 18), says CID director Datuk Huzir Mohamed.

He said six of those arrested are foreigners, aged between 17 and 60, who were spared by the armed kidnappers on Tuesday.

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Source: thestar.com.my

Piracy and pilfering at sea

By LLOYD GREEN

From Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean to Latin America and the Caribbean, the developing world is paying a price for maritime piracy and pilfering. Southeast Asia was home to two-fifths of the world’s pirate attacks between 1995 and 2013, while the waters off Africa remain a watery version of the Wild West.

To put things into perspective, Somali pirates cost East Africa more than US$24 billion between 2010 and 2017, the Horn of Africa remains a pirate hotspot, and West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea has witnessed an explosion in hostage-takings and kidnappings.

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Source: asiatimes.com

Only international action will stop increase in piracy: BIMCO

A fresh annual report from the International Maritime Bureau shows that attacks in West Africa helped push piracy numbers up in 2018. In terms of military and law enforcement, an international operation is not complicated, so what is needed above all is the will to act.

According to the bureau’s report, there were 201 incidents in total* reported to the bureau last year. That is a rise from 180 incidents in 2017 and from 191 in 2016. Of this, 48 incidents took place in Nigeria, up from 33 in 2017 and 36 incidents in 2016.

The report also showed that the region saw a considerable spike in violence in the last quarter of the year, with 40 kidnappings in the waters off Nigeria alone. In West Africa, there appears to be challenges with underreporting, which is estimated at as much as 40%, the report says.

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Source: hellenicshippingnews.com

Maritime Security News: It’s worth noting that the IMB only collates reports submitted to them directly by CSOs and Masters. To gain a full picture of maritime crime, it is necessary to collate reports from all agencies.

The Deadly Evolution of Abu Sayyaf and the Sea

By Meghan Curran

On the morning of January 27, 2019, two bombs exploded inside the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, in Jolo on the Sulu Province in the southern Philippines. Tearing a hole through the cathedral during a Sunday service, the bombs claimed 20 lives, injured dozens more, and propelled Islamist extremism in the Philippines back into international headlines. In the aftermath of the blast, Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte promised to “pursue to the ends of the Earth the ruthless perpetrators behind [the] dastardly crime,”as the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), the country’s notoriously violent Islamic separatist group, claimed responsibility for the attack. While President Duterte may not need to go to the “ends of the Earth” to put an end to the ASG-fueled terror, his government will certainly need to act beyond its own shores. Illicit maritime activities are at the root of ASG funding and operations, and ensuring the group’s defeat will require focused government efforts to improve maritime security in its area of operations.

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Source: cimsec.org

Dutch hostage joins Abu Sayyaf


SULU:
 Philippine National Police (PNP) Sulu Provincial Commander Pablo Labra reported Saturday that a Dutch hostage abducted by the Abu Sayyaf militants seven years has joined the terrorist group.

Identified as 57-year old Ewold Horn, Labra said the kidnap victim turned outlaw together with Swiss national Lorenzo Vinciguerra were adopted by Abu Sayyaf militants and suspected MNLF members in Tawi-Tawi in 2012.

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Source:dailyexpress.com.my

Abu Sayyaf Group.