Pirates Kidnap Crew of MV Bonita
Pirates have kidnapped nine crew members from a Norwegian shipping vessel named the MV Bonita off the coast of Benin in West Africa.
MV Bonita was anchored and awaiting berth at the Cotonou port to discharge a shipment of gypsum when the pirates boarded, the shipping firm J.J. Ugland said in a statement Sunday.
The Norwegian Shipowners’ Association said that it is in close contact with Ugland Shipping with a common and clear goal to bring the 9 sailors back to safety.
The vessel and remaining crew are safely anchored in Cotonou and investigations are carried out. An emergency response team from J.J. Ugland is working with authorities on the case.
The threat from piracy in West Africa has been high for years. Based on the threats the Norwegian Maritime Administration has issued MARSEC-level 2 for operations in Nigeria, Togo and Benin.
The Gulf of Guinea is world's most dangerous piracy hotspot, says the International Maritime Bureau (IMB).