The Saudi-led coalition intervening in Yemen’s civil war says an oil tanker has been attacked by Houthi rebels.
A statement said the Saudi tanker was in international waters when it came under fire at around 1330 local time (1030 GMT) on April 3. It continued: “As a result of that attack, the tanker was subjected to a slight but ineffective hit and it resumed its naval course northwards, escorted by a coalition warship.” The incident happened west of Yemen’s Red Sea port of Hodeidah. The statement did not name the tanker neither did it give details of the nature of the attack. A European Union naval force that operates in the region said it understood that the tanker’s crew were safe and unharmed. The media department of the Houthi-run Yemeni military said only that its naval forces had “targeted a coalition battleship”.
Assessment and Analysis
Houthi forces, backed by Iran, control much of Yemen’s Red Sea coast and the civil war has frequently threatened to spill into the shipping lanes of the southern Red Sea. Houthi rebels warned as recently as January 2018 that they might target tanker traffic. Hodeidah, close to where the latest attack occurred, has been in Houthi hands throughout the four-year conflict and is a crucial entry point for fuel and food. The Saudis, however, have severely limited shipping traffic to the port.
In the days immediately prior to the tanker attack there were signs that the Yemen conflict was escalating. Houthi forces launched missile strikes on Saudi Arabia and the Saudis were accused of killing civilians in air strikes on Hodeidah. All ships sailing through the High Risk Area (HRA) that includes parts of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, should register their plans with the Maritime Security Centre – Horn of Africa (MSC-HOA).
They should also use the Maritime Security Transit Corridor (MSTC) set up by US-led Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) in the Western Indian Ocean and Red Sea regions.
Gone is the time when Seafarers used to call for maritime jobs or draft a written application. It is history when Seafarers used to rely on the traditional ways of getting hired. The latest survey, sponsored by our very own KVH Industries and Intelsat, polled 6,000 serving seafarers for their views on a broad range of issues surrounding the digital transformation affecting shipping. Inter alia it found that around 75% of the seafarers now use the internet at sea to find their ideal work which is exactly 32% more than in the last survey.
As per the survey, 92% of the seafarers have said that internet access “strongly influences” their decision on where to work, according to the latest Crew Connectivity 2018 Survey Report published by Futurenautics Maritime this week. This compares to a 75% figure reported in the last edition of the same survey in 2015. Connectivity at sea is also now viewed by 95% of seafarers as having a positive effect on safety, compared to only 72% three years ago.
In addition to the above, 69% of these respondents viewed the increasing use of big data and analytics as a positive opportunity for their jobs in the next five years.
Suspicious approach at 0530UTC in Posn: 1359.2N – 05140.1E
18.02.2018 | Posn: 1359.2N – 05140.1E
Warning! There was an suspicious approach at 0530UTC near Posn: 1359.2N – 05140.1E (In the vicinity of Port B IRTC). Vessel is safe. Mariners & Seafarers to exercise extreme caution near this area.
MV was approached by 2 skiffs near Posn: 1231.00N – 04329.10E (Bab el Mandeb Strait).
09.01.2018 | Posn: 1231.00N – 04329.10E
MV was approached by 2 skiffs near Posn: 1231.00N – 04329.10E (Bab el Mandeb Strait). The MV sighted 5 POB each skiff. The skiffs aborted the approach at 3 cables, apparently due to the rough seas. Vessels and crew are reported safe. Mariners & Seafarers to exercise extreme caution near this area.
21.11.2017: 1940 UTC | Posn: 14-08.7N – 048-57.3E
MV reported an attack from 4 skiffs near Posn: 14-08.7N – 048-57.3E (Near Mukulla Port). The incident is now complete; vessels and crew are reported safe. Mariners & vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.
19.11.2017: 1903 UTC | Posn: 1404N – 05147E
A MV was approached by a skiff with ladder at 1NM near Posn: 1404N – 05147E (near IRTC point B.). MV increased speed eventually losing the skiff. MV is reported safe. Mariners & Merchant vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.
08.11.2017: 1300 UTC | Posn: 1230N – 04337E
A MV reported 2 skiffs sighting 7 POB near Posn: 1230N – 04337E (in the vicinity of Mayyun Island) within 100M. Boats eventually withdrew, MV is reported safe. Mariners & Merchant vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.
18.10.2017: 1930 UTC | Posn: 201530N – 0665036E
A MV reported 2 skiffs following her near Posn: 201530N – 0665036E at a range of 50NM for an hour. Due to less light nothing was sighted in the boats. MV is reported safe. Mariners & Merchant vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.
One skiff sighted with 3 POB and weapons near Posn: 1237N – 04728E
22.09.2017: 0721 UTC | Posn: 1237N – 04728E
One skiff was sighted at 0721 UTC near Posn: 1237N – 04728E. There were 3 POB and weapons sighted. Mariners & Merchant vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.
28.08.2017: 0302 UTC | Posn: 130012N – 0431024E.
A Merchant vessel reported sighting 4 skiffs at 1302 UTC near Posn: 130012N – 0431024E. Each of these skiffs had 5 to 6 POB. Vessel also reported seeing one ladder on board two of these skiffs, no weapons were spotted. These skiffs did not approach any close to 0.8NM. AST showed weapons forcing the skiffs to turn away. Mariners & Merchant vessels to exercise extreme caution near this area.