Kidnapped Polish Sailors “Safe and Sound”

The five kidnapped sailors of the Polish cargo ship Szafir have contacted their families and are reported to be “safe and sound”, the Polish Foreign Affairs Ministry said in an update.

“Today, the kidnapped sailors have contacted their families in Poland by phone and said they were safe and sound. To protect the sailors’ lives, the MFA refrains from providing any further details,” the Ministry said.

The five crew members, including the captain of the Cyprus-flagged MV Szafir were kidnapped on Friday, November 27th off Nigeria, when the ship was boarded by a group of armed men approximately seven nautical miles east of Brass at about 01:49 hours local time.

The remaining 11 crew members are safe and on board the Szafir, which was escorted by Nigerian Navy to Onne port.

“For the sake of security of our citizens, the MFA and the Polish Embassy in Abuja are in constant contact with the Nigerian authorities, the ship owner, and the sailors’ families,” the Ministry added.

As informed, an emergency task force is operating at the MFA headquarters since Friday, which coordinates further actions.

The vessel, which is owned by Voltaire Shipping Company and operated by Euroafrica Services Nigeria Limited, was en route to Onne port from Antwerp when it was attacked.

The Nigerian Navy and other security agencies have launched a search and rescue operation for the kidnapped crew of the Polish cargo ship.