Commercial Ship Approached by 12 Small Craft in Red Sea

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Monday July 1, 2024

A suspicious approach to a commercial ship operating in the Red Sea was reported over the weekend, according to a British government agency monitoring maritime security in the region.

The incident took place about 13 nautical miles south-west of Al Mukha at 3:10 AM UTC on Sunday, the UK Maritime Trade Operations agency said in a social media post.

"The master of a merchant vessel reports being approached by 12 small craft, consisting of a mixture of fast boats and smaller kayak-type boats (some were observed as uncrewed)," the agency said.

"The 12 small boars remained in the vicinity of the merchant vessel for approximately one hour before leaving the area.

"The vessel and crew are reported safe, and the vessel is proceeding to its next port of call."

Commercial ships operating near Yemen have been coming under attack from the country's Houthi movement over the past eight months in a response to the conflict in Gaza.

Several leading shipping companies have been avoiding the region altogether, taking longer routes around Africa rather than using the Suez Canal. This is likely to deliver a significant boost to bunker demand and freight markets while the current situation continues.