Weekly Maritime Security Report 16 October 2019
East Africa and the Indian Ocean
India: Robbers board vessel off Gopnath Point
The Tanzanian-flagged Offshore Supply Vessel, ASD Jaguar was robbed during the afternoon hours of 3 October, while being towed off the coast of India. The incident occurred at approximately 1630 hrs local time, some 3 nm west of Gopnath Point. The vessel had been towed by the tug, Bateleur, and was bound for Bhavnagar for demolition. The Master of the tug noticed three individuals boarding the ASD Jaguar and making off with ship stores before escaping. The Master then proceeded to report the incident to VTS Khambat, who in turn reported it to the Indian Coast Guard.
PGI Analysis: Robberies are frequently reported at Indian ports and in nearby waters. However, incidents at Gopnath Point are rarely reported. Pirates most frequently target vessels overnight to take advantage of low visibility, though robberies in broad daylight have been reported in the past. Most robberies are opportunistic, and although some robbers are reported to be armed, instances of violence are rare, indicating that thieves are predominantly armed for self-protection or intimidation.
Select Maritime News
Brazil: Authorities seize 1.3 tonnes of cocaine at Paranagua port
Authorities seized 1.3 tonnes of cocaine concealed among a cargo of sugar in a container at Paranagua port. Authorities found the narcotics during a routine cargo inspection. The narcotics were bound for Rotterdam port in the Netherlands.
Costa Rica: Authorities seize 830 kg of cocaine in Isla Tortuga
Authorities seized 830 kg of cocaine from a boat on the coast of Isla Tortuga. Authorities seized the narcotics after identifying a suspicious boat near the island by aircraft. The smugglers brought the boat ashore and escaped in a forest after they were chased by maritime authorities. The origin and intended destination of the narcotics were unclear.
Dominican Republic: Authorities seize 599 cocaine bricks from boat off Caucedo
Authorities seized 599 cocaine bricks from a boat about 105 miles off the coast of Caucedo. Authorities seized the narcotics after identifying a suspicious boat from an aircraft. Three drug smugglers were arrested at the scene. The origin of the narcotics was unclear.
Iran: Suspected missile strikes damage state-owned tanker in Red Sea
Two missile strikes damaged a state-owned Iranian tanker in the Red Sea off Saudi Arabia, Iranian officials said. Iran described the incident as a "terrorist attack", without providing further details. The attacks on the Sabiti vessel damaged two storerooms and caused an oil leak, Iranian state media said. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the incident. The incident comes after strikes on key Saudi oil facilities in September, which were claimed by the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels but blamed on Iran itself by the US.
Oman: Police arrest eight over diesel smuggling in Musandam
The coastguard in an unspecified location in Musandam governorate arrested eight people and seized two boats in a suspected diesel smuggling attempt, local media reported. Initial reports did not confirm how much diesel was seized. Fuel smuggling is common in Oman, particularly in Musandam governorate.
Spain: Industrial accident kills one at Sagunto port
An accident at the port of Sagunto near Valencia left one person dead and another injured. The incident occurred when a General Cargo Ship, the YALIKOY, attempted to berth at the port. The Chief Officer of the Yalikoy was hit by a snapped mooring line and died instantly.