Is Southeast Asia really a piracy hot spot?

Call for enhanced security in the Singapore Straits.

Is Southeast Asia really a piracy hot spot?

Sam Bateman

A recent piece by Elliot Brennan (Southeast Asia: Here be Pirates) misrepresents the piracy situation in Southeast Asia. It follows media reports claiming Southeast Asia is now the main global ‘hot spot’ for global piracy and sea robbery. That may be true in absolute numbers of reported attacks, but before making broad statements about piracy in the region and the counter-measures required, it’s necessary to look more closely at the figures.

Realistic assessments of the piracy threat require analysis of the reported attacks in terms of their seriousness, the types and sizes of vessels attacked, and whether ships were proceeding slowly or stopped at anchor or in port at the time of the attack. Any ship at all may be attacked while stopped or proceeding slowly if appropriate precautions are not taken and vigilance exercised.

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