Negotiations between the owners of the tanker “Stelios K” of Greek interests with pirates are ongoing for the release of the abducted Greek crew after pirates boarded the vessel in Nigerian waters earlier this week.
The crew is made up of 5 Greek seafarers, two of which, the engineer and a sailor remain on board, with the other three held in captivity. A special negotiator acting on behalf of the company is in talks with the pirates to set a ransom for their release. The ship was attacked on route to Lagos in the Gulf of Guinea, while the families of the abductees are in constant contact with the company, whose representatives have assured them that they will pay the ransom.
Pirate activity has increased in the waters of the Gulf, as in the space of only three days, three were 3 boardings on tankers in the area. The other two involved the abduction of five sailors aboard the Ghana-flagged cargo ship AM Delta and another 14 from the Liberian-flagged tanker off Sao Tome. Pirate attacks are on the rise in Guinea and are a headache for international shipping. In 2020, there have been 24 attacks in the area and a total of 128 sailors have been taken hostage so far