The threat of piracy against merchant shipping continues to be present throughout the entire High Risk Area (HRA). Successful disruptions by naval forces over the past months, in conjunction with masters’ adherence and implementation of BMP4, have significantly reduced the pirates’ ability to capture vessels.
The SW monsoon has ended and the transition period established. These weather conditions provide more favourable opportunities for small boat to operate in the Somali Basin and the western GoA.
Although there are various terrorist groups and organizations operating in the region the NATO Shipping Centre has no information of an imminent attack either on land or at sea. However it is recommended that ships remain vigilant and report suspicious activity or security concerns.
NSC Standing Guidance
It is imperative that merchant vessels remain vigilant at all times in transit and/or at anchorage and fully implement protection measures set down in BMP4 across the whole HRA. Small craft conducting legitimate activities such as fishing are present in much of the HRA and may be difficult to distinguish from pirates. See the NSC Weekly Update (http://www.shipping.nato.int/operations/OS/Pages/NSC-Weekly-Update.aspx) and Fishing templates(http://www.shipping.nato.int/operations/OS/Pages/Fishing_in_the_HRA.aspx) for more detailed guidance. NSC will issue alerts in the event of piracy attacks, approaches or suspicious activities are observed.
Registration & Incident Reporting
Registration with MSCHOA before entering the HRA and initial and regular reporting to UKMTO are highly recommended to ensure military authorities are aware of a vessel’s passage and vulnerabilities. UKMTO should be immediately telephoned at +971 50 55 23215 in the event of any piracy activity. If Masters are able to take pictures and/or video of the suspicious activity safely, please provide these via email to UKMTO at email@example.com, NATO Shipping Centre (NSC) at firstname.lastname@example.org or MSCHOA at email@example.com. This information will be used by Counter Piracy forces.