Russian press is reporting the kidnapping of six of its citizens from a container ship off the coast of Benin.
Pirates kidnapped six Russian seamen from a MSC Mandy container ship in the Gulf of Guinea off the coast of Benin, the Rosmorrechflot Rescue Coordination Center reports.“The ship MSC MANDY, on board of which there were 26 crew members, including 23 citizens of Russia and one citizen of Ukraine, was subjected to a pirate attack on January 1 during a drift 20 miles from the coast aboard the port of Cotonou (Benin) in Gulf of Guinea “, reported Russian state news outlet RIA Novosti.
According to Rosmorrechflot, 7–9 people, armed with firearms and melee weapons, broke into the container ship flying the flag of Panama.Pirates began robbing the crew.Two hours later, the attackers left the ship “abducting six crew members.”All of them, presumably, are citizens of Russia (captain, senior assistant to the captain, 3rd assistant to the captain, boatswain, fitter-welder, cook).The remaining 18 crew members, according to the Maritime Transport Agency, were not injured.“According to the situation and crisis center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, consular departments in Nigeria and Benin are engaged in the release of the abducted crew members,” reports Rosmorrechflot (quoted by RIA Novosti).
There were 24 people on board, most of them Russian nationals,” the Russian embassy stated, reported Russian state news agency TASS.
“The attackers took six people hostage, including the captain, and vanished,” the embassy said, adding that all abducted sailors were Russian nationals.
The Russian Embassy in Nigeria also takes action to release the Russian nationals. It specified that 23 of the 24 crew were Russians. Those who were not kidnapped are safe on board the ship that has already left the territorial waters of Benin and Nigeria, it says.
“In cooperation with the local security agencies the embassy takes all necessary measures to establish the whereabouts of the Russian sailors and have them released,” the Embassy in Nigeria said on its Facebook page.
Below is evidence of how Russia usually treats pirates.