Armed Robbery Incident in Asia: ReCAAP ISC Urges Enhanced Vigilance in the SOMS

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An armed robbery against a ship in Asia has been reported to the ReCAAP ISC. The incident occurred off Pulau Cula, Indonesia, in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore (SOMS). This brings the total number of incidents reported in the SOMS since January 2023 to 56. The ReCAAP ISC is concerned about the continued occurrence of incidents in this area and advises ships to exercise enhanced vigilance when transiting the SOMS. They also recommend that littoral states increase patrols and enforcement in the area.

In other news, the threat level for the ‘Abduction of Crew for ransom in the Sulu-Celebes Seas’ has been downgraded from ‘POTENTIALLY HIGH’ to ‘MODERATE’ by the Philippine Coast Guard. This downgrade suggests that incidents are still possible but are relatively less severe in nature. The ReCAAP ISC has updated its advisory to ships, suggesting that they consider re-routing from the area as an option. However, for ships transiting the area, they are strongly encouraged to exercise extra vigilance and report all incidents immediately to the Operation Centres of the Philippines and Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) of Malaysia.

The ReCAAP ISC also reminds ship masters and crew to report all incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships to the nearest coastal State RCC and flag State. They should exercise vigilance and adopt appropriate preventive measures, referring to the Regional Guide 2 to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia.

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