Two killed, four kidnapped in Nigerian pirate attack
10 August 2012
The accommodation barge Jascon 33, owned by Netherlands-based Sea Trucks Group, was attacked on August 4 outside the mouth of the Bonny River off the Delta region of Nigeria. STG confirmed that two Nigerian security guards were killed, a further two wounded and four nationals from Indonesia, Iran, Thailand and Malaysia kidnapped.
Sea Trucks Group accommodation vessel Jascon 33
A spokeswoman for STG, Corrie van Kessel, released a statement saying the company is focused on getting the crew back safely and making every effort to find out the current location of the kidnappers. She added that the injured security personnel are now in Port Harcourt Hospital for treatment.
Security in the Niger Delta has improved since the government agreed an amnesty for militants in 2009, ending years of conflict. But piracy attacks remain common in the Delta and offshore, largely as a means for criminal gangs to raise large sums of money through ransoms.
The International Maritime Bureau (IMB), which monitors pirate attacks worldwide, says there has been a 25% rise in attacks in Nigerian waters, whilst Somali-based incidents have sharply declined. Ten attacks on bulk freight, container and energy vessels have occurred in the first three months of 2012, equal to the total for the whole of 2011.
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