ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre has released its monthly report for July 2020 on the situation of piracy and sea robbery in Asia.

It found six incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships were reported in Asia during July. Of the six incidents, one was a piracy incident and five were armed robbery against ships.

There was no report of abduction of crew in the Sulu-Celebes Seas and waters off Eastern Sabah, Malaysia in July.

“However, the abduction of crew for ransom remains a serious concern as demonstrated by the warning issued by the ReCAAP ISC on 2 July that five Abu Sayyaf Group members were planning to conduct abduction of crew from ships passing by Tawi-Tawi and Sabah waters,” the report stated.

“ReCAAP ISC is also concerned about the continued occurrence of incidents on board ships while underway in the Singapore Strait. Three incidents were reported in July.”

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With these, a total of 19 incidents were reported in the Singapore Strait during January-July 2020 comprising 15 incidents occurring in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme, two incidents in the precautionary area, one incident in the westbound lane of the TSS and one incident just outside (south) of the TSS.

Compared to January-July 2019, the total number of incidents reported during January-July 2020 had increased by more than 50%. A total of 37 incidents (comprising 34 actual incidents and three attempted incidents) were reported during January-July 2019.

The number of incidents reported during January-July 2020 was the highest compared to the same period of 2016-2019.

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