Gwangyang to dredge third fairway

The South Korean port of Gwangyang is planning to deepen and widen its Fairway 3 to better cater to bigger ships.
Currently, Fairway 3 is 22 m deep and 380 m wide. It is one of Gwangyang port’s seven fairways.
Yeosu Regional Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Office, which oversees Gwangyang and Yeosu

Australian Navy Seizes $1.7bn in Drugs

By MarEx 2015-07-08 16:43:36

In its sixth successful haul in eight weeks, Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Newcastle seized 139kg of heroin, with an estimated street value of around $AUD 41 million ($USD 30.4m), off the East coast of Africa.

Under the support of the 30-nation Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), the latest haul brings the Australian Navy’s total seizures in the Middle East region to an estimated street value of $AUD 2.3 billion ($USD 1.7bn) since February 2014.

The latest haul was recovered during a routine verification boarding on July 3 when Newcastle intercepted a dhow using two rigid hull boats and discovered the narcotics hidden on board. After the drugs are weighed and recorded the navy disposed of them in the ocean.

So far this year HMAS Newcastle has seized 1.4 tons of heroin, valued at over $AUD 413 million ($USD 306.7m). However, the HMAS Melbourne another navy frigate still holds the value record, intercepting and detroying over $AUD 1.1 billion ($USD 820m) in drugs.

Vice Admiral Johnston said this most recent seizure will have an extraordinary impact on the funding of terrorist organizations, which is where much of these illegal drug profits end up.

HMAS Newcastle’sCommanding Officer, Commander Dominic MacNamara, spoke of his crew’s impressive contribution to the CMF to date.

“The fact that we continue to be successful says much about the way the ship and supporting headquarters work together in order to achieve the results we have,” Commander MacNamara said.

The Newcastle is the youngest of four Adelaide Class Guided Missile Frigates (FFG). It was patrolling with the Combined Task Force 150 (CTF 150), one of three details operated by the CMF.

Operation Manitou is Australia’s contribution to the CMF, which provides maritime security across more than 2.5 million square miles of international waters in the Middle East. The CMF operates in some of the world’s busiest shipping lanes and focuses its efforts on combating terrorism and preventing piracy.


Piracy Driven by Economic Strife

By MarEx 2015-07-08 15:30:49

In an informal survey by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and Oceans Beyond Piracy of 66 Somali inmates convicted of piracy, economic strife was their primary reason for engaging in maritime crimes.

One prisoner said that he went to sea to hijack ships becasue his family poor, but other inmates offered they actully left piracyon the high seas once they had enough money to retire. Some prisoners mentioned that illegal fishing had taken the only work they new and that if it persists piracy may continue because its many Somalis only option.

The presence of the international naval forces was a primary deterent to piracy deterrent, and many of them said the warships patrolling was a significant contribution for them to stop their maritime crimes. Private armed guards was another reason that some of the inmates left as well.

Family and community pressures and counter-piracy messaging are effective as well. One prisoner said that being in prison was the worst place to be in the world. Meanwhile, others cited that the fear of imprisionment was a huge deterrent.

Piracy off Somalia reached a peak in 2011. But, the region haswitnessed a significant decrease during the past three years. Oceans Beyond Piracy reported that in 2014, there were only 18 pirate attacks and none of them actually hijacked a commercial vessel. An increase in regional security measures and heightened naval patrols has been the main contributor for the decline.

Meanwhile, Southeast Asia has seen the opposite side of the trend recently with 2015 registering its highest level of attacks over the last five years.