2 Pinoys, 6 others abducted from Greek oil tanker in Cameroon port

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Dec 31 2019 05:45 PM

GREECE—Armed men attacked a Greek oil tanker in the Cameroonian port of Limbe on Tuesday and abducted eight seamen, Greece's merchant marine ministry said.

The five Greeks, two Filipinos and a Ukrainian were part of a 28-member crew aboard the Happy Lady, including one, a Greek national, who was injured, the ministry said in a statement. 

"Merchant Marine Minister Yannis Plakiotakis is following developments closely, along with the Greek foreign ministry and the oil tanker's operator," the statement said.

Attacks on ships and kidnappings for ransom are relatively frequent along the West African coast.

Pirates hijack ships sometimes for several days as they pillage their cargo while demanding hefty ransoms in return for the release of the crew.

Armed men raided another Greek oil tanker, the Elka Aristote, in November around 10 nautical miles off the Togolese capital Lome, capturing four sailors.

They released three of the men on December 13, but one died in captivity.

An investigation is still under way, but "it appears his death was not a result of actions by the hostage-takers but of illness," the tanker's shipbuilder said at the time.