On 10 February 2021, the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) issued an updated Maritime Advisory, which reads in part as follows:

“1. Issues: The ongoing conflict in Libya continues to pose a potential risk to U.S. flagged commercial vessels transiting near coastal Libya. Threats may come from a variety of different sources including, but not limited to: missiles, rockets, artillery, mines, small arms, aircraft, and unmanned aerial vehicles. These threats pose a direct risk to all commercial vessels operating in the area.

“2. Guidance: Vessels operating in this area are advised to review security measures, ensure AIS is transmitting always (except when transmitting creates a threat to the safety or security of the ship or where a security incident is imminent, consistent with provisions of SOLAS and U.S. law), and monitor VHF Channel 16.

“a) Vessels at anchor, operating in restricted maneuvering environments, or proceeding at slow speeds should be especially vigilant. U.S. flagged commercial vessels transiting the conflict area should conduct a risk assessment and incorporate appropriate protective measures into their vessel security plans.

“b) To afford best protection in the region, U.S. flagged commercial vessels are encouraged to check in with the NATO Shipping Center upon entering the Mediterranean Sea. In the event of any incident or suspicious activity, call the NATO Shipping Center and activate the Ship Security Alert System immediately. Mariners are also encouraged to review the “Central Mediterranean” section of the NATO Shipping Center website at https://mc.nato.int/nsc/operations/news/2020/threat-to-commercial-shipping-operating-in-the-mediterranean-2.”

To read the full text of the advisory, please click here.