Nigerian Pirates Kidnap 12 Crew from Swiss Cargo Ship
A Swiss-operated ship has been attacked off the coast of Nigeria, Switzerland’s foreign ministry said, amid media reports that 12 crew members had been kidnapped by a gang of pirates.
The MV Glarus, merchant ship operated by Geneva-based shipping company Massoel Shipping, was transporting wheat between Lagos and the southern Niger Delta oil hub of Port Harcourt.
According to reports, the incident took place at about 45 nautical miles south west of Bonny Island. The pirates held 12 among the ship's staff members as hostages.
According to West African nation's maritime agency, the crew members the Swiss cargo vessel kidnapped by pirates are from the Philippines, Slovenia, Ukraine, Romania, Croatia and Bosnia.
AP reported quoting company sources that the pirates boarded the ship using long ladders and cut razor wire on the deck to make their way to the bridge. According to AFP: " Having destroyed much of the vessel's communications equipment, the criminal gang departed taking 12 of the 19 crew complement hostage."
The company is working with the authorities and specialists to secure the speedy and safe release of those being held, said reports.
A Massoel spokesman reportedly said the crew members' families are being closely informed of the situation.