Somali pirates successfully hijacked a small bunker
tanker last weekend.
EU Navfor’s Cmdr Harrie Harrison confirmed on Sunday that a small tanker
was hijacked the day before.
Talking to Associated Press, he said the vessel was en route from the
UAE to Berbera in Somalia’s breakaway northern province of Somaliland.
The vessel has since been identified as the bunker tanker ‘Jubba XX’, a
UAE owned and flagged tanker of 4,831 dwt. She had a crew of 16 (one Sri
Lankan, five Indians, three Bangladeshis, one Sudanese, one Myanman, one
Kenyan and four Somalis.
During the morning of 17 July, the vessel was located by a maritime
patrol aircraft 100 miles north-west of Socotra Island, heading to the
northern Somali coast.
Little information was available but it was reported that nine suspected
Somali pirates are on board the vessel.
The vessel was not registered with MSCHOA at the time of the hijacking.
In another incident off West Africa, two days after armed gunmen seized
a Greek oil tanker along with its crew off the coast of Benin, the
pirates released the vessel and its crew.
A spokesman for the owners Endeavor Marine Agency said that the 20
seafarers, including the Greek captain and two Greek engineers, were
safe and in good health.
In a statement released earlier, the Greek Citizen Protection Ministry
had said that 10 men attacked the Liberian-flagged tanker ‘Aegean Star’
last weekend off the Nigerian coast, while it was carrying oil between
Ghana and Benin.