Piracy For Oil Is Up Again

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The waters of West Africa once again becomes unsafe. This was stated by the participants of the 10th International Conference on Tanker Transportation of Oil and Petroleum Products, held in London.

David Fletcher, head of the risk control department at EOS Risk Group, says that oil piracy has again emerged as a real threat, which cannot be ignored, as early as January 2018. At risk are ships carrying jet fuel, diesel and crude oil.

Kidnapping for ransom remains the main business of Nigerian pirates, Fletcher noted. Last year, 93 sailors were abducted in 15 incidents. At the same time, there were 40 attacks in total – 24% more than in 2017.

On average, four people are abducted in one attack and held captive – again, on average, about 36 days. The ransom sums increased, and the terms of hostages in captivity also increased. Pirates use more aggressive tactics. Even ships with the height of the surface of the board up to 16 meters and with armed guards on board are attacked.

Fletcher, describing a typical modern pirate group, divided it into “mercenaries whose business it is to shoot” and “highly experienced navigators in navigation.” According to the expert, at present there are two main groups – Yenagoa, based in the state of Bayels, and Subonnema from the State of River (the states, of course, Nigerian).

Piracy For Oil Is Up Again

Most pirates are Nigerians, but come across from other countries in West Africa, for example, from Ghana. The groups are well organized, but the thirst for profit sometimes obscures the minds of their representatives – in any case, they do not carefully plan their operations, and in general they don’t have long thinking habits.

Attacks resumed in the Indian Ocean. According to David Fletcher, this is happening because the root causes of local piracy are still not resolved. Here the attacks are usually not related to the cargo of the vessel. Everything is connected with the lack of elementary security measures on the coast in such countries as Somalia and with the discontent of the local people – firstly, their openly poor living conditions, and secondly, the successful fishing of foreign fishing vessels.

As for Yemen, here the risk of attacks has decreased. However, the crews of ships, one way or another connected with Saudi Arabia, still should not relax.


Source: Maritime News of Russia