A total of ten crew members were kidnapped from the crude oil tanker ‘Alpine Penelope’ while underway in Gulf of Guinea, on 20 February. The Liberian-flagged ship was heading to Lagos, Nigeria, when it became subject of an attack about 76 nm SW Cotonou.
After the attack on the crude oil tanker ‘Duke’, 20 crew were abducted on December 15. According to V.Ships Management (India) 19 seafarers were released on January 19, but one crew lost his life. Now, new information emerges, noting that the pirates provided medical assistance to the ill crew member, but were not able to save him.
The Maritime Administration (MARAD) of the United States Department of Transportation issued one new advisory to commercial shipping, canceling the earlier ones issued in 2019. Namely, the 2020-002-Gulf of Guinea-Piracy/Armed Robbery/Kidnapping for Ransom, cancels the the U.S. Maritime Advisory 2019-010.
A total of eight crew men were kidnapped from a Malaysian-registered fishing trawler which was found abandoned on 17 January, at approximately 4.24 nm off Pulau Tambisan, Lahad Datu, Sabah, Malaysia, according to data provided by ReCAAP ISC.
In line with a growing concern over the continued attacks against ships in the Gulf of Guinea, Risk Intelligence has recorded almost 100 maritime security incidents across the region in 2019 to date, around one third of those involved tanker vessels of all types.
On 22 December, the Philippine military forces rescued two Indonesian fishermen who were kidnapped from their vessel by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) on 23 September, in the waters of Lahad Datu, Sabah, Malaysia, ReCAAP ISC informed.
Although IMB figures indicated a decrease in the number of incidents for the first nine months of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018, piracy in terms of crew kidnappings reached another record high this year, pushing shipping to rethink its approach on maritime security.
Following the abduction of four crewmembers from “Elka Aristotle” tanker off Lome, Togo, the managing company of the Greek-flagged tanker announces that three of the crewmembers taken are free. However, the company reports that one of the four kidnapped crew, of Filipino nationality, has died, in what it is understood to not be a from actions by those holding the crew hostage but due to illness.
In the wake of two subsequent piracy attacks involving crew abductions in the Gulf of Guinea, ECSA and ICS expressed concerns about the rise of armed attacks on merchant ships in the region and underlined these attacks threaten the smooth conduct of international maritime trade.
Pirates boarded the tanker ‘Elka Aristotle’ on 4 November, off Lome, Togo, kidnapping 4 crew members, European Navigation confirmed. Now, the company is trying to free the kidnapped crew, highlighting that the safety of its crew is of paramount importance.
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