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Old 10-02-2010, 07:31 PM   #1
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i asked my captain and crew to set a course to Tawi Tawi - island in the Sulu Sea - about 30 kms from the Sabah coast yet still in the Philippines. They were aghast " No Sir, not the place to go, too dangerous, too many pirates,, no liquor".. Ok., i thought this is the Philippines, all one country,, why the DMZ between the Visayas and Mindinao, Catholics and Moslems. I checked with PGYC - Puerto Galera mission control - no piracy in 20 years against small boats, and no kidnappings since Abu Sahef in 2001. Has anyone chanced these waters, or how do i deal with a mutinous crew.
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Old 10-02-2010, 09:19 PM   #2
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I'm not sure I'd argue with your crew. There seems to be continuing unrest, though a quick search gave me a 2009 report, nothing later (but I was just skimming). Surge in Mindanao kidnappings

Fishing boats were the biggest victims in the past, things don't seem to have improved. Island nations can have a lot of problems with communication and resentment between islands, let alone cultures. It seems that the southern muslim islands are the poor relations to the rest of the Philippines, and your Christian crew possibly considers them a serious threat to them. I don't think that reason will prevail, unfortunately.

We were in Sarawak in 2001, and the kidnappings in Sarawak caused a lot of dismay and unhappiness.
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Old 10-03-2010, 02:44 PM   #3
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I can echo what JeanneP says. We have numerous friends from the Philippines--a few are cruisers--they will not consider going to the areas you consider. All one Philippines? Not! really. Culturally very different. Unfortunately, your crew will be unhappy and frightened if you choose to go. Even if nothing bad happens to your boat you must consider your crew. They will not be able to do the best work in these circumstances and you risk losing crew.

Best of luck to you.
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