IMB raises alarm on pirate attacks in Southeast Asia

The recent spate of pirate attacks off Southeast Asian waters has stoke fears that vital shipping lanes are again threatened by high-sea crimes.

Malaysia’s piracy reporting centre International Maritime Bureau (IMB) is warning small tankers to maintain strict anti-piracy measures in the South China Sea as at least six known cases of attacks have been reported since April this year.

The latest hijackings seem to follow a specific modus operandi, where armed pirates seize a small tanker and siphon off its cargo to large bunker tankers or other small tankers in a ship-to-ship operation. In some cases navigational equipment is destroyed but the crew are left unhurt. They then release the hijacked vessels.

“These types of incidents are not common in this region which makes the situation even more alarming,” said IMB.

“The pirates appear to be interested in oil products such as diesel oil. One of the hijacked tankers was released quickly possibly because the pirates realised it had the wrong type of cargo,” IMB noted.

IMB has issued a warning to all ships that these attacks have occurred against small coastal tankers primarily in the South China Sea waters off Bintan and Bintulu islands.

Posted 19 June 2014

© Copyright 2019 Seatrade (UBM (UK) Ltd). Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Seatrade.

Lee Hong Liang

Asia Correspondent

Read more stories like this...

Sign up to the Seatrade Maritime Newsletter and get stories like this delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe Now >

ShipTech Storybox

Seatrade ShipTech Middle East

23 – 24 September 2019 | Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai

The knowledge hub of technological advancements for the shipping sector. Learn, discover and experience new technologies and optimise operational efficiencies.

View 2019 programme >