Trio kidnapped from ro-ro as pirates strike off Gabon

Attack took place a day before kidnappings from MSC boxship.

Three people have been abducted by pirates from a ro-ro ferry off Gabon.

Maritime Domain Awareness for Trade-Gulf of Guinea (MDAT-GoG) had issued an advisory notice for a hijacking off Port-Gentil on Saturday.

It has since been reported that the vessel was later moved by the gunmen towards Nigeria, but released on Monday.

A security consultancy said that the ship in question was the 1,000-gt Equatorial Guinean-flagged Elobey VI (built 1975).

The vessel was underway from Bata, Equatorial Guinea, to Annobon in the same country.

The Equatorial Guinean ministry of defence said the pirates abandoned the vessel within 2.1 nautical miles (4 km) off the Okwori terminal exclusion zone.

As the gunmen left, they reportedly kidnapped three people: two Moroccan nationals and one Equatorial Guinean national.

In addition, another four “hostages” were seen on the pirates’ speedboat.

It has not been confirmed if these were some of the seven Ukrainian crew kidnapped from the 957-teu boxship MSC Talia F (built 2015) on Sunday.

The ro-ro has since proceeded to Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, under escort of the Equatorial Guinean Navy.

Equasis lists its ownership as unreported following a sale in 2011.

Boxship raided

The MSC-operated feeder vessel was attacked 74 nautical miles to the north.

It was destined for Libreville, Gabon.

The ship conducted evasive manoeuvres and increased speed, but was subsequently boarded.

The MSC Talia F is owned by Technomar Shipping.

Source: TradeWinds