SECURITY IN WATERS OFF LIBYA
Action required: Members are invited to note the information provided concerning two recent security incidents off the coast of Libya and, the associated reporting requirements for ships transiting the area bounded by the Libyan coastline and 34-00N.
Members may be aware of two incidents which recently occurred off the coast of Libya where merchant ships were fired upon by vessels claiming to represent the Libyan Coast Guard.
It should be noted that Libya has imposed restrictions on the area bounded by the Libyan coastline and 34-00N, and the following NAVWARN was recently reissued with respect to this declaration.
It should be further noted that although the ships involved in the incident were hailed by the approaching craft, it was not possible for the Master to determine the legitimacy of their status. This is likely to remain a problem as the Coast Guard vessels do not, at present, have AIS equipment onboard which would allow their identity to be more easily confirmed.
EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN SEA – LIBYA
1.- Military operation in area bounded by Libyan coastline and 34-00N. The ships in area or near borderline should proceed with extreme caution, and for its own safety to get into contact with nearest Coastal Station, to receive safe trackline. The ships will be send Position, Course, Speed, ETA at destination Port, Cargo and Name of Ship’s Agent. This information should be forwarded 72 hours before in bound area and must be repeated daily, at noon. Pease report to MARITIME TRANSPORT AUTHORITY.
Name: Omar A. Omar D.PFSO
Name: Mohamed F. Abdulaaty
2.- Cancel NAVAREA III 356/15.
Given the severity of the incidents and the likely ongoing difficulties that will be experienced in determining the identity of Coast Guard vessels, it is advised that the reporting procedures detailed in the NAVWARN should be followed by ships navigating within the controlled area to minimize the potential for misidentification by the Libyan authorities. Similarly ships that are not bound for ports within the controlled area may wish to consider routes north of 34-00N to avoid any potential for misidentification. Any difficulties encountered in complying with the requirements should be reported to the undersigned (firstname.lastname@example.org). The situation in Libya remains volatile, and there is still the potential for changes in authority to have a consequential effect on shipping.
ICS acknowledges with great thanks the assistance of Confitarma and the EUNAVFOR Med Operational Commander in investigating these incidents and providing ICS with background information.
The Secretariat will continue to monitor the situation and endeavour through its contacts in the region to ensure that the potential for such incidents is reduced. Members are invited to note the information provided and to circulate it as appropriate.
Manager (Environment and Trade)