Chaff Launch

Friday, January 27, 2006

Latest ONI World Wide Threat to Shipping (to 25 Jan 06)

For the latest ONI World Wide Threat to Shipping report, go here and click on the date. Highlights:
1. SUSPECTED SOMALI PIRATES CAUGHT IN THE ACT: The
USS Winston S. Churchill responded to an IMB Piracy Reporting Center
report of a boarding attempt by armed pirates in two small speedboats
onto a bulk carrier approximately 213NM off the east coast of Somalia, per
20 Jan reporting. After unsuccessfully attempting to board the bulk carrier,
the speedboats reportedly returned to a nearby cargo dhow. The warship
successfully chased down and took control of the dhow in question and
discovered it was a victim of piracy as well. The suspected Somali
pirates have been taken into custody pending further investigation.
ONI Note: The continued brazen attempts to attack merchant vessels at
unprecedented distances from the Somali coastline, despite coalition
presence, demonstrates the need for mariners operating in the area to
stay at least 200 NM off the east coast of Somalia and take heightened
anti-piracy precautions at all distances off the Somali coastline...

2. NIGERIA: Support vessel (LIBERTY SERVICE) boarded 11 Jan
while underway approximately 7 nm off the coast of Bayelsa State.
An estimated 40 armed men traveling in three canoes forced their way
aboard the vessel and abducted four western expatriates. An e-mail
statement issued by a little known group calling themselves The
Emancipation of the Niger Delta claimed responsibility for the
kidnapping, but the claim cannot be verified. Violence against
the oil sector is frequent in the Niger Delta, where an estimated
20 million people live in poverty alongside a multi-billion-dollar
industry. Resentment, coupled with break-down of law and order,
has fuelled killings, sabotage, kidnappings, and oil theft (LL,
REUTERS)...

PHILIPPINES: The fishing vessel (MAN CHUN YI) came under
fire 15 Jan in the morning hours while underway between Batan
Islands and Babuyan Islands, Bashi Channel. Five individuals in
military style uniforms fired dozens of shots at the vessel then
raided it. Master was killed and one crewman was shot in the leg.
Philippine authorities said no naval or coast guard vessels were
in those waters when the incident occurred and is investigating
the attack. Local fishermen’s association called for the
government to increase protective measures for the nation’s
fishing boats from pirate attacks (LM)...

1. GREENPEACE - SEA SHEPHERD CONSERVATION SOCIETY - INSTITUTE
OF CETACEAN RESEARCH - ANTARCTIC WHALING: The (ARCTIC SUNRISE)
and (NISSHIN MARU) scraped hulls, 08 Jan. The bow of the (ARCTIC
SUNRISE) and the starboard side of the (NISSHIN MARU) sustained
minor damage, there were no injuries, and both vessels are still
operational. Both vessels claim the other was responsible for the
collision. On 09 Jan the (FARLEY MOWAT) backed into the (ORIENTAL
BLUEBIRD) starboard hull to starboard hull. The master of the (FARLEY
MOWAT) claims responsibility and explained it was intentional. Both
vessels sustained minor damage, There were no injuries, and both
vessels are still operational. On 25 Jan (FARLEY MOWAT) was
reported “detained” by South African authorities for deficiencies
in crew documentation. ONI NOTE: These collisions are
driven by political differences and stubbornness on the part of
all parties. They are likely to continue unless international
authorities intervene on behalf of one side or the other. The
dangers stemming from these differences are typically limited to
the involved parties and do not pose a more generalized threat to
international shipping (GP, Institute of Cetacean Research, Sea
Shepard Conservation Society, ONI)..

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