This module can be studied on a standalone basis or as part of the Certificate in Terrorism Studies
Download the full Certificate in Terrorism Studies prospectus here
Due to a number of devastating terrorist attacks, land and air targets have been better secured by governments over the years – although loopholes can be found, as the Al Qaeda-related attempt to blow up an airliner over Detroit on Christmas Day 2009 or the cargo planes bomb plot of 29th October 2010 highlight. The focus on protecting potential targets on the land and in the air prior to 9/11 has left less-protected sea targets potentially more vulnerable to terrorists. Attacks on the USS Cole, the MV Limburg or the Super Ferry 14 are cases in point. Thus, the post-9/11 years saw a flurry of international and national laws which were passed with the intention to secure the maritime domain and to create something which is known as Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA).
Somewhat ironically however, the ‘real’ maritime security threat we have to face at the moment is one more regularly posed by maritime piracy. Piracy has always been witnessed in coastal areas and on the high seas, but the increasing number of attacks on ships over the past decades has now raised concerns about the proliferation of this phenomenon, and about a possible nexus between piracy and maritime terrorism.
Modern pirates operating off the coasts of Somalia, and increasingly off West Africa, are now able to operate on the high seas using mother ships, global positioning systems (GPS) and other sophisticated instruments to stalk their prey. Likewise, certain terrorists groups also appear to be training to improve their maritime skills and using piratical tactics to launch maritime attacks in the future – yet another reason to look into the possibility of a nexus between piracy and terrorism.
The module is designed to be studied over fours weeks:
Week 1: Understand the concept of maritime piracy and terrorism by gaining an overall historical perspective and become familiar with the profiles and capabilities of the groups currently perpetuating this threat.
Week 2: Gain awareness of the different types of threats posed by pirates and terrorists to maritime trade and the level of impact and probability of each type of threat.
Week 3: Learn about the various legal initiatives from governments and international organisations, and the problems of implementation.
Week 4: Understand the various private sector solutions that are currently in place to fortify port and ship security, which include hardware and software solutions and private security measures.
Study modules individually or as part of the Certificate in Terrorism Studies.
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