PIRACY: HOSTAGE SITUATION IN THE PHILIPPINES IS A WORRYING TREND

July 4, 2019

The Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) reports that there were seven incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships in Asia in May 2019. This compared with nine incidents reported in May 2018. Although there were no reports of abduction of crew in the Sulu-Celebes Seas and waters off Eastern Sabah; and no hijacking of ships for theft of oil cargo, ReCAAP says that “the abduction of crew for ransom in the Sulu-Celebes Seas and waters off Eastern Sabah remains a serious concern”.

ReCAAP noted that, compared to the six preceding months (November 2018 – April 2019), the number of incidents reported in May 2019 had increased. Between November 2018 and April 2019, a total of three to four incidents had been reported each month.  Of the seven incidents reported in May 2019, three occurred on board ships at anchor/berth (at Kandla in India and Dumai and Cigading in Indonesia) and four on board ships that were underway.

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