Global risk and crisis management consultancy NYA International today releases its 2016 Kidnap and Piracy Map, accompanied by the Global Kidnap Review, a special report examining kidnap for ransom over 2015 and identifying themes for 2016. Together, the map and report provide a guide on the threats to people and operations worldwide.
Intensified civil conflicts in Africa, entrenched criminality in Latin America and the advance of Islamist militancy in spaces worldwide have contributed to “severe” kidnap ratings for 11 countries, up from eight in 2015. A further 11 countries, including India, Egypt, Lebanon, Cameroon and Kenya moved from “medium” to “high” – the latter four of these all face significant threats from Islamist militancy.
In 2016, global economic uncertainty and low oil prices threatens to exacerbate the kidnapping threat in countries such as Mexico, Nigeria, Venezuela and Libya, where threats are already high to severe.
There is cause for optimism however: peace talks in Colombia, once the world’s leading kidnap hotspot, showed mediation and concession can reduce threats, albeit over time.
There are severe threat ratings for piracy off Somalia, Nigeria, Singapore and Malaysia. Although there have been no hijackings of large commercial vessels off Somalia since 2012, attacks, sightings and hijackings of smaller vessels in 2015 indicate the threat remains severe. Extremely violent hijackings, crew kidnappings and a return to militancy in the Delta sees Nigeria retain its severe threat rating. Criminal boardings off Singapore and Malaysia remain constant, and periodic hijackings for cargo theft contribute to its severe rating.
Alex Kemp, Managing Director of NYA, comments, “NYA’s 2016 Kidnap and Piracy map shows some of the security threats that organizations face as they operate globally. We advise organizations to be fully informed about the threats, put appropriate mitigation measures in place, provide security training for their staff, and ensure that the organization is prepared to response to incidents of this nature, if they occur. Good security risk and crisis management helps protect human lives, and safeguard the organization’s operations and reputation.”