Theft, piracy warning in SE Asia

Security still a major challenge.

Ships warned of theft in Malacca, Singapore straits

Commercial ships passing through the Malacca and Singapore straits have been warned to be alert for possible theft by local people and pirates while traversing Asia’s busiest straits.

The Indonesian Navy’s Western Armada Sea Security Group (Guskamla Armabar) commander, Cmdr. Abdul Rasyid Kacong, said that based on information from seafarers, the straits were vulnerable to theft by locals using pancung (small wooden boats).

“According to intelligence data, from January to February there were 17 reports of theft using pancung filed by commercial ships moored or sailing in the area,” Abdul Rasyid told The Jakarta Post on Friday.

The high rate, according to Rasyid, was of concern of the Navy leader who had ordered Guskamla Armabar to act quickly and to strengthen patrols on the Malacca Strait and its surroundings.

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