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Israel - port situation

The situation in Israel and Gaza and the surrounding sea areas remains volatile and we recommend assessing all port calls in Israel on a case-by-case basis.

Ports situation

According to information received from Gard’s local correspondents in Israel on 16 April 2024, Iran's recent air strike against Israel has had no immediate port security implications. The country’s ports, including Ashkelton, Ashod, Haifa, Hadera and Eilat, continue to operate as normal, although authorities have implemented strict entry procedures for vessels carrying some hazardous materials. The correspondents further warn that GPS signal disruptions in Israeli ports and along its coast is likely to continue in the near future.

Advice is likely to evolve quickly

The security situation in Israel remains volatile and we strongly recommend ship operators and their masters trading to Israeli ports to carefully assess the risks involved in all port calls on a case-by-case basis and:

  • make frequent checks with local sources of information, e.g. vessel’s agents, local authorities, and/or Gard’s correspondent, to obtain the most up-to-date and reliable security information available at any given time,

  • follow advice received from flag administrations and port authorities regarding applicable ISPS security levels, and

  • review relevant security and contingency plans and apply them accordingly.

Prior to getting underway, operators and managers should develop plans for responding to GPS disruptions that affect safe navigation, and ensure that seafarers on vessels heading towards Israel are aware of any imminent security threats in the region. Decisions on crew shore leave should always be taken with the prevailing local security situation in mind.

As Israel is included in the Joint War Committee’s (JWC) Listed Areas for Hull War, Piracy, Terrorism and Related Perils, we also recommend conferring with the vessel’s war insurer well in advance of arrival at any Israeli port.

We are grateful to our correspondents M. Dizengoff & Co. and Harpaz P&I for assisting with the above information.

Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East

The Israel-Gaza conflict has impacted not just the security situation in Israeli ports. Vessels sailing in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea are warned to exercise caution, and threats related to the geopolitical tensions in the Southern Red Sea, and more recently the Persian Gulf, regions have escalated even further. This is particularly true for vessels with links to Israel, however, vessels linked to the United States, United Kingdom and other countries involved in Operation Poseidon Archer are also at risk. Furthermore, the threat of collateral damage or direct hits on any merchant vessel in the region remains high.

For more information on the regional impacts, please visit our hot topic page on the subject.

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