The Straits of Malacca, notorious pirate grounds, set a record last year - they were "pirate-free"
The strategic Malacca Straits was pirate-free last year due to joint maritime and air patrols with neighbours Indonesia and Singapore, Malaysia's deputy airforce chief said Sunday.Nice to have a success story to report.
The maritime corridor, which handles 30 percent of all sea transport globally, was prone to attacks in the 1990s but joint action in the last few years has reduced piracy to zero, deputy airforce chief Bashir abu Bakar told state news agency Bernama.
"From January to late December 2007, we recorded zero percent pirate attacks in the Malacca Straits and also recorded a reduction in pirate attacks in the waterways of Sabah and Sarawak (on Borneo Island)," he told Bernama.
"Maritime and air patrols carried out with Indonesia and Singapore through the 'Eyes in the Sky' programme introduced two years ago have worked in reducing acts of violence and robbery in the straits," he added.
Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore all border the key waterway and carry out numerous joint patrols in the area.