…As Kidnapped Product Tanker Crew members remain in Captivity***
The families of five Indian seafarers kidnapped at the Bonny Outer Anchorage last month have written to the Indian Government, stressing that two weeks after their breadwinners were abducted in Nigeria, communication was yet to be established with any of them.
Recall that out of the six seafarers who were kidnapped at the Bonny Outer Anchorage in the afternoon of April 19, all of which are still missing, five were Indian nationals.
The Maritime Executive, quoting the Times of India, noted that the India’s embassy in Nigeria has however pacified the family, stressing that not only was it working closely, with the Nigerian Navy and police forces to recover the seafarers, but also emphasizing the need for utmost caution, in the handling of the entire affair.
“Concerned parties have made initial contact. Caution is of utmost importance for everyone’s safety,” said the High Commission of India in Abuja.
At 1330 hours, in the afternoon of April 19, Nigerian pirates boarded the product tanker Apecus while she lay at anchor just off the coast of Bonny Island, a well-defended oil and gas complex in the Niger River Delta.
In broad daylight, the attackers abducted six seafarers and departed. The remaining crew members were unharmed, and they navigated their vessel to the Bonny Inner Anchorage.
Relative to areas further offshore, the Bonny anchorage has a more established security presence. The Nigerian Navy maintains a forward operating base on Bonny Island to defend the Bonny Oil Terminal, and the service’s Regional Maritime Awareness Center is located near the Bonny Island approach channel.
According to the Times of India, the seafarers’ families have not yet been able to speak to the abductees and have not received updates on their condition.