Pirated Tankship Freed by Nigerian Navy
Pirates fled from 51,000 DWT tankship 'Abu Dhabi Star' after crew took refuge in 'citadel' while Nigerian Navy intervened.
The Singapore-flagged product tanker 'Abu Dhabi Star' is operated by Pioneer Ship Management Services, and the attack occurred whilst the tanker was drifting approximately 14 miles off the port of Lagos. Reportedly the crew took refuge in the ship's citadel, requesting assistance.
Later, Singapore's Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) said: "The company has informed MPA that the vessel and crew are now safe. "The vessel's crew, together with Nigerian security forces, will be conducting a vessel security check and the vessel will be proceeding on her voyage after obtaining clearance from the authority."
There has been a significant increase in the number of pirate attacks in parts of West Africa. In some of the recent cases, the armed gangs tend to steal the cargo instead of seeking a hefty ransom before releasing the crew. Two tankers were seized off Togo last month by hijackers who siphoned off the oil and later released the crew and ships.