Military attack risk to shipping in Libya - UPDATE


  • Date: 25/05/2015

UPDATE: The latest strike against a merchant ship off the Libyan coast on the 24th May emphasises the unpredictable situation that currently prevails in this region.  The tanker ‘Anwaar Afriqah’ which was damaged and with one crew member killed in the air attack is a Libyan flagged ship with the state-owned General National Maritime Transport Company employed to transport national oil company cargoes to state-owned power stations.

This incident illustrates threat presented by the continuing conflict between the rival governments operating from Tobruk and Tripoli and attacks made by them against perceived insurgents.

As at 26th May, calls to Libya must be declared in order for cover to be maintained. AP rates are subject to change at short notice.

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For the second time this year a merchant ship operating in the vicinity of Derna has been fatally attacked by military forces.

The Turkish owned Tuna 1 was shelled in international waters as it approached the port of Tobruk and then attacked from the air as it tried to leave the area on Sunday, according to reported statements from the Turkish foreign ministry.

During the course of these attacks the ship’s third officer was killed.

Reuters have reported that the ship was targeted about 10 miles from the coast after it was told not to break a ban on approaching the eastern city of Derna according to  Libyan military spokesman Mohamed Hejazi told Reuters.  The ban is alleged to be an effort to prevent the supply of Islamist militias in the area.

Previously in January, a Greek operated tanker, the MT Araevo, was attacked off the port of Derna by a Libyan air force jet and two of its crew were killed. In August 2014 a similar attack at Derna was made on a Greek operated bulk carrier, MV Iron Baron V, although no casualties were sustained.

The threat of air attack also led to the last commercial international airline services into Libya to be suspended.

The Club is monitoring the situation in Libya and will provide further updates when available. At the time of writing the Libyan ports and coastal range are an AP Area. Members whose ships intend to visit this area should contact the Club to obtain the latest terms for cover.