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Wednesday, May 06, 2020

Crimes Against Merchant Shipping and Sailors including Gulf of Guinea Kidnappings and More

Reported as 16 sailors abducted by pirates in Gulf of Guinea
At least 16 sailors have been abducted by pirates in the Gulf of Guinea. According to reports from international maritime websites, three ships were attacked by pirates May 1-4 off the coasts of Nigeria and Gabon within the borders of the gulf. At the beginning of May, pirates took control of one of the Panama-flagged oil-laden ships off the coast of Nigeria with a speedboat and kidnapped 10 crew members. Other attacks were made on fishing boats.
More reports from the ICC IMB Piracy Reporting Centre Live Piracy Reports here:
Attack Number: Narrations:
069-20 02.05.2020: 0315-0400 UTC: Posn: 02:46.2S - 080:14.7W, Around 4nm South of Posorja, Ecuador.
Seven armed persons in a skiff chased and fired upon a container vessel underway. Alarm raised, crew mustered, and the search light directed towards the skiff. Coast Guard onboard the vessel fired four warning shots resulting in the skiff moving away. Crew and vessel safe.
068-20 03.05.2020: 1950 UTC: Posn: 01:36.7N – 104:52.8E, Around 29nm NE of Pulau Bintan, Indonesia.
Four robbers in a wooden boat, armed with knives, came alongside an anchored product tanker. Two of the robbers boarded the tanker using a hook attached with a rope. Duty AB on routine rounds encountered the robbers and immediately informed the bridge. Alarm raised, PA announcement made and crew mustered. The robbers took the AB’s UHF radio by force and escaped. A search was made throughout the tanker. Padlocks to four storerooms were found broken but nothing reported stolen.
067-20 30.04.2020: Around 1845 UTC: Posn: 03:29.99N – 003:50.17E, Around 127nm SW of Bayelsa, Nigeria.
Armed pirates in a skiff attacked and boarded a product tanker underway. They kidnapped 10 crew and escaped. The Owners of the tanker informed the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre who then liaised with relevant regional and international authorities in the region and requested assistance to be sent to the vessel, which now had only four crew who were unable to navigate the vessel to a safe port. A Nigerian Navy Security Vessel was dispatched and provided the necessary assistance to the tanker. The tanker was then assistance to a safe anchorage by a vessel from the same company in the vicinity.
066-20 29.04.2020: 2115 UTC: Posn: 01:16.7N – 104:16.9E, Singapore Strait
Duty crew in the engine room noticed three unauthorised persons entering the engine room. The duty crew shouted at the persons who escaped. Alarm raised, crew mustered, and Singapore VTIS notified. The Singapore Police boarded the vessel for inspection. On searching the vessel, nothing was reported stolen.
065-20 20.03.2020: 0130 - 0530 UTC: Posn: Pointe Noire Anchorage, Congo.
Unnoticed, a robber boarded an anchored container vessel via the anchor chain, stole ship’s properties and escaped. Incident reported to the local port control.
064-20 26.03.2020: 0820 UTC: Posn: 05:59.8N – 002:21.2E: Around 21nm SSW of Cotonou, Benin.
Around five persons in a speed boat approached a product tanker underway. PA announcement was made, accommodation locked down and all non-essential crew mustered in the citadel. Master increased speed and commenced evasive manoeuvres, resulting in the pirates aborting the approach and moving away. Vessel and crew safe.
And piracy maps from the ICC IMB Piracy Reporting Centre here:
2020 to date
Gulf of Guinea to date

Strait of Malacca and Singapore Strait to date

Most of the reported incidents are simple boardings to steal loose items - but the Gulf of Guinea kidnapping schemes are much more serious and dangerous.

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