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In its weekly report for 13-20 July, two incidents of armed robbery against ships in Asia, both to ships while underway off Tanjung Pergam, Bintan Island, Indonesia, in the Singapore Strait on 17 July, within an interval of 30 mins and in close proximity to each other.

The incidents were classified as CAT 3, as the perpetrators were armed with knives. They were sighted in the engine room in one incident, and in the steering gear room in the other. The perpetrators escaped upon being sighted, the crew was safe and nothing was stolen in both incidents.

The persistent occurrence of incidents in the Singapore Strait, particularly off Tanjung Pergam, and therefore issued a relevant Incident Alert on 19 July. Of the 22 incidents reported in the Singapore Strait since January 2021, 18 incidents occurred off Tanjung Pergam.

Incident 1

The first incident involved the Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier ‘Star Nike’, approximately 9 nm northwest of Tanjung Pergam, Bintan Island, Indonesia in the eastbound lane of the TSS in the Singapore Strait.

While underway at 0016 hrs of 17 July, five unauthorized persons were sighted in the steering gear room. One of the perpetrators was armed with knives. The perpetrators escaped upon being sighted. The ship’s alarm was raised and crew mustered.

A search onboard the ship was conducted but with no further sighting of the perpetrators. The master declared that nothing was stolen and all crew were safe and accounted for. No assistance was required and the ship continued its voyage for Manila, the Philippines.

A safety navigational broadcast was initiated. The RSN’s MSTF and Singapore Police Coast Guard were notified. Information on the incident was shared with the Malaysian and Indonesian authorities.

Incident 2

The second incident involved the Liberian-flagged bulk carrier ‘Adventurer’, approximately 7.7 nm northwest of Tanjung Pergam, Bintan Island, Indonesia in the eastbound lane of the Traffic Separation Scheme in the Singapore Strait.

While underway at 0040 hrs of 17 July, five unauthorized persons armed with knives were sighted in the engine room. The perpetrators escaped upon being sighted. The ship’s alarm was raised and crew mustered.

A search onboard the ship was conducted but with no further sighting of the perpetrators. The master declared that nothing was stolen, and all crew were safe and accounted for. No assistance was required and the ship continued its voyage for Kaohsiung, Taiwan, China.

A safety navigational broadcast was initiated. The Republic of Singapore Navy’s (RSN) Maritime Security Task Force (MSTF) and Singapore Police Coast Guard were notified. Information of the incident was shared with the Malaysian and Indonesian authorities.

The ship master and crew to report all incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships to the nearest coastal State and flag State, exercise vigilance and adopt relevant preventive measures taking reference from the Regional Guide to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia.