Wed. Jun 23rd, 2021

A Filipino was among the crewmen kidnapped by pirates from a tuna-fishing vessel close to Benin in the Gulf of Guinea earlier this week.

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Also kidnapped were four Koreans, Ghanaian police said. The identity of those kidnapped were not disclosed.

The Gulf of Guinea, a key shipping route extending from Senegal to Angola, is a hotbed of abductions of maritime crew last year. Commercial vessels are usually targeted by pirates.

The Ghana-registered tuna-fishing boat was hijacked on Tuesday but the country’s navy recovered the vessel and rescued some crew members, Felix Charles Asare, crime officer for the Marine Police Unit in Ghana said on Wednesday.

“Efforts are under way to rescue the abducted crew members,” he said.

“Information we’ve gathered from the crew members indicate that the pirates took away five other members made up of four Koreans and a Filipino,” he added.

Ghana’s navy had been on the alert in the country’s territorial waters due to intensified attacks by pirates.

The Gulf of Guinea saw 130 maritime kidnappings in 2020, which is 96 percent of the 135 reported cases globally. SOVEREIGNPH

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