Pirate attacks are escalating in the Gulf of Guinea, with tragic consequences. The IMB Piracy Reporting Centre posted on its website that eight armed pirates boarded a drifting bulk carrier, awaiting berthing instructions, on Monday in the Gulf of Guinea, 110 NM south of Lagos, Nigeria. Most of the crew retreated to the “citadel,” a locked safe room aboard the ship. The pirates shot and killed the ship’s captain. The chief engineer attempted to escape from the pirates but was injured in a fall and later died. The chief cook was taken hostage but released when the pirates fled the vessel after stealing what they could. A French warship in the area received the IMB PRC broadcast warning and went to the aid of the ship. The warship escorted the ship to Lagos. The remaining 18 crew members were uninjured.
French navy helped ship attacked by pirates off Nigeria
The French amphibious assault ship, Siroco, is reported to be making a port call in Lagos, though there is no confirmation that she was the French vessel that assisted the bulk carrier.
Earlier this week, the Togolese Navy thwarted a pirate attack against the petroleum tanker, MV Eleana, off the coast of Togo.
Thanks to Phil Leon for passing the news along.