Attack alerts issued

Following closely after warnings about attacks on ships in the Straits of Malacca, the United States Maritime Administration (MARAD) has issued a warning of increased likelihood of attacks by al-Qaeda on vessels transiting the Bab el Mandeb, Red Sea, and the Gulf of Aden along the coast of Yemen. MARAD states that though the nature of the threat is unknown, it is suspected that any terrorist action may employ a small boat loaded with explosives set to detonate upon ramming a ship. They also warn that more conventional attacks using RPG rockets or missiles could occur.

The warning urges vessels transiting the danger area to maintain strict 24-hour visual and radar watches, to regularly report their position, course and speed, and to heighten their readiness to respond to an attack. Vessels are at greatest risk in areas of restricted manoeuvrability, while entering or leaving port, or when at anchor.

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