Thursday, May 14, 2009

Kuala Lumpur International Conference on Piracy and Crimes at Sea

Malaysia is taking a proactive role to combat piracy via the Kuala Lumpur International Conference on Piracy and Crimes at Sea organised by the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

The two-day event, which starts on May 18, will be officiated by Foreign Minister Datuk Anifah Aman.

The conference aims to share the region’s experience in fighting piracy in support of the global effort to eradicate the problem against the backdrop of escalating piracy activities in the Gulf of Aden.

The growing number of attacks on merchant ships has been observed off the coast of Somalia since 2005.

This has alarmed the international community because the Gulf of Aden is an important trade lane connecting the Red Sea, Suez Canal and the Mediterranean Sea.

The condition has since worsened with about 40 ship attacks and about 90 attempted attacks reported. The majority of the incidents occurred in the Gulf of Aden last year.

It has also been reported that the Somali pirates earned about US$80mil in ransom payments in 2008.

The papers concerning the matter will be presented by prominent industry decision makers, organisations and stakeholders.

They include the International Maritime Organisation, United Nations’ special representative from Somalia, International Maritime Bureau, International Association of Independent Tanker Owners, Maritime Institute of Malaysia and the US Coast Guards.

Source: StarBiz

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