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Monday, December 05, 2005

Ship photos and the Malacca Strait

Reported here:
Malaysia is considering asking its wider Asian neighbours, such as India, to provide photographs of ships before they enter the Malacca Strait to tighten security in the busy sea lane, the chief of armed forces said on Monday.

Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia have already launched coordinated naval patrols and airborne surveillance in the strait, which carries a quarter of global trade.

There are fears the narrow waterway, already plagued by pirates, could become a target for a terror attack.

A speaker at a maritime conference this week in Malaysia's northern resort island of Langkawi made the suggestion for the photographs of vessels, defence chief Admiral Mohamed Anwar Mohamed Nor told reporters.

"What was suggested was to have a network of inter-connected agencies, to have a surface picture compilation of the ships before they come into the Straits of Malacca," he said.

"Ships would have entered the Straits from the Gulf, the Indian Ocean and the Andaman Sea," Mohamed Anwar added.

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