Offshore vessel owner Bourbon Offshore has confirmed the abduction of two of its crew members from their vessel off Nigeria.
The company says its vessel Bourbon Liberty 251 come under attack Tuesday (Feb 23) while off the coast of Nigeria. Two crew members are believed to have been abducted. The ten other crew members are considered safe and back on board the vessel in Onne port.
The abducted men are of Russian and Nigerian nationalities.
Bourbon says it is in contact with the families of the two kidnapped. The company says it will not provide any further comments at this time, but will continue to disclose any new information when available and verified.
Nigeria continues to be a hotspot for violent piracy and armed robbery at sea, where gangs of armed pirates board vessels with the intention of kidnapping crew for ransom or stealing fuel oil cargo. The International Maritime Bureau received reports of 14 piracy incidents with nine boardings in 2015, although the actual numbers are believed to be higher as many go unreported.
The statement indicated that the vessel was recovered by personnel onboard a navy ship at a location 55 nautical miles off Brass in the Niger Delta state of Bayelsa in Nigeria but without rescuing the abductees which were taken into captive before the arrival of the navy ship. “Efforts are currently ongoing to ascertain the whereabouts of the abducted crew,” the Nigerian navy said.
Barely five days ago, the Nigerian navy had rescued an oil tanker and its crew from pirates near the islands of Sao Tome. Both the oil tanker and the supply vessel which it rescued on Wednesday have been stationed at the Onne Port located in Nigeria’s River State where naval authorities will conduct further investigation.
SOURCE: BEAZLEY SYNDICATE