Two ships have been targeted by robbers over the weekend in the eastbound lane of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore (SOMS), reports piracy watchdog ReCAAP Information Sharing Center.
On 21 March 2015 at or about 0100 hrs (local time), four men boarded Marshall Island-registered bulk carrier, Capetan Giorgis while underway at approximately 3.8 nm off Tanjung Sengkuang, Batam. As reported, nothing was missing onboard and the crew was safe.
On the same day at or about 0545 hrs (local time), seven perpetrators armed with knives and tools boarded a Luxembourg-registered container ship, MSC Vancover while underway at approximately 9 nm northeast off Pulau Karimum Besar. The perpetrators had robbed the 2nd engineer’s gold chain and watch. The group fled the scene and there was no further sighting of perpetrators and no further assistance required, ReCAAP added.
The master of the two vessels reported the incidents to Singapore Vessel Traffic Information System (VTIS) who notified the Singapore Police Coast Guard, Republic of Singapore Navy and Indonesian authorities; and initiated navigational broadcasts to alert mariners about the incidents.
“From the close proximity of the two incidents, it is of high probability that the robbers will continue to pry in this area over the next few days. The ReCAAP ISC recommends vessels to take extra precautionary measures when operating in this area, especially in the hours of darkness, post extra all round lookouts and alert the authorities as soon as possible, even in attempted cases. The Centre also urges law enforcement agencies to heighten their attention to this area,” ReCAAP said.
Image: Hamburg Hafen