RealNews

Attacks on Chemical Ships in Southeast Asia Seem to Be Piracy, Not Terror

Small boats packed with men carrying assault rifles have attacked three chemical tankers in the Strait of Malacca in the last month, including one that was briefly seized today. None of the attacks resulted in any spills of toxic cargoes, and they might have been unrelated to terrorism or the war in Iraq, said Noel Choong, the chief of the International Maritime Bureau Piracy Reporting Center in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. But the incidents are still worrying security officials in the region, especially at a time of concern about terrorist activity and given the hazardous cargoes often carried by chemical tankers, Mr. Choong said tonight. “Chemical tankers are very dangerous,” particularly if any kind of spill occurs, he said. “It’s not easy to contain if the vapor is poisonous.” Full Story

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