Nigerian forces board attacked boxship, rescue 11 crew from citadel

Nigerian Special Forces have boarded the Portuguese-flagged containership Tommi Ritscher and rescued 11 crew members who fled to the citadel after pirates attacked the ship, maritime security firm Dryad Global said in an update.

Based on the report, the boarding of the vessel by the special forces, which took place yesterday evening, was not opposed.

However, there has been no mention of the 8 crew members who didn’t make it to the citadel and who were reportedly held hostage by pirates on board.

As such it remains to be determined whether pirates managed to flee the ship and if they took the seafarers with them to demand ransom for their liberation.

Based on the reports from Reuters, Bulgarian foreign ministry confirmed on Tuesday that the Bulgarian captain and seven sailors were kidnapped by pirates.

To remind, a group of pirates boarded the ship on April 19, 2020 while the vessel was within the Cotonou anchorage area, West Africa.

This the second incident within the Cotonou anchorage within 2020 and the fifth incident in this location across a 12-month time frame.