The AMSSA recognized definition for Piracy and Armed Robbery at Sea is provided by the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) and is as follows:

¨An act of boarding or attempting to board any ship with the apparent intent to commit theft or any other crime and with the apparent intent or capability to use force in the furtherance of that act¨

Furthermore the above definition covers actual or attempted attacks whether a ship is berthed, at anchor or at sea. Petty thefts are excluded unless thieves are armed.

The reason AMSSA has adopted this definition is because IMB notes that the majority of attacks  against ships take place within the jurisdictions of States and piracy as defined under the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982) does not take this aspect into consideration.

PIRACY means unlawful acts as defined in article 101 of the 1982 UNCLOS:


Legislative Text - Best Practice
Djibouti Code of Conduct Promotes Security Council (2008) resolutions 1816, 1838, 1864 and 1851 (2008) of IMO General Assembly Resolutions 63/111.


Piracy Seminars, Conferences and Workshops (inc presentations)

April 2010 Expert Group Workshop. Addis Ababa: Ethiopia - Peace and Security - African Union
March 2010 Piracy Seminar: Brussels - European Union