On Thursday, August 15, nine Chinese and eight Ukrainian seamen were abducted after an attack on their vessel off the coast of Cameroon in the Gulf of Guinea. Cameroonian security officials confirmed the incident, which is suspected to have been carried out by Nigerian pirates. A search is ongoing for the kidnapped seafarers.
There is a high risk of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea. According to the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), 72 incidents of piracy and armed robbery were reported between Ivory Coast and Cameroon in 2018. The IMB describes the area as "the world's most dangerous for piracy."
Maritime travelers in region are advised to remain vigilant for the approach of suspicious ships while aboard vessels, monitor developments to the regional security environment, and report all incidents to the nearest coastal state and flag state authorities. Pirates and other criminals are often armed; do not resist if confronted.
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