Pirate attacks doubled off the coasts of East Africa in 2017, but also increased in other regions of the world such as Latin America and the Caribbean, apart from other threats to maritime security due to armed conflicts, according to the report Annual Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBC) by One Earth Future (OEF).
“The activity during the year 2017 clearly demonstrates that pirate groups continue to have the capacity to organize and carry out attacks against ships that transit the region,” said Maisie Pigeon, director of the report.
Risks have increased in the Gulf of Aden and in the Red Sea. “There is a wide range of threats around the Horn of Africa that have been complicated by the instability in Yemen,” where the Houthi rebels and Abdo Rabbo Mansur Hadi’s government are waging a three-year civil war, said Phil Belcher. , director of Intertanko.
In fact, Belcher has indicated that they have advised Intertanko members in their security analyzes to “take into account other threats, beyond traditional piracy, stemming from the regional conflict in Yemen”, in which almost all of the Gulf countries.
Piracy has also gone up in the Gulf of Guinea. During the past year, a total of 1,726 sailors suffered 97 incidents, despite the fact that the countries of the region increased spending on maritime safety by 13.2 million dollars.
Latin America and the Caribbean are no exception. “We have observed a significant increase in violent incidents and crime, particularly on the coasts of Venezuela and Suriname,” Pigeon said, according to an OEF statement.
Instead, the situation improved in Asia last year. The facts related to piracy were reduced by 20 percent compared to 2016. In particular, the kidnappings for a rescue went from 22 to four. “We believe that the credit is due to the joint patrols of the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia,” said Gregory Clough, director of OBP.
However, the report emphasizes that piracy is just one of many factors affecting the safety of the seas, highlighting the growing influence of organized crime. To combat it, it has appealed to a multilateral response. “Where there is good governance, the seas are safe, the coastal communities are healthy and the blue economies grow stronger,” said OEF president Larry Sampler.
Source: Europa Press