Yesterday the Lithuanian government revealed that four seafarers were abducted at Port Harcourt in southern Nigeria. Two Lithuanians and two Ukranians were taken from a Comoro Island-registered ship, authorities in Vilnius said, without identifying the ship’s name.
Lithuanian Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius has formed a working group to investigate the abduction circumstances and take care of the sailors’ release.
Gunmen are believed to have stormed the ship, likely to be a tanker, and kidnapped the four sailors.
Kidnappings in the Niger Delta have been on the increase of late and shipowners have been advised to be extremely vigilant when calling in the area.
“The only effective deterrent is for there to be a permanent naval presence in the region and for the Nigerian government to allow western guards to protect vessels. If we could mirror the systems and processes that we put in place on the other side of Africa and other regions then it would have an immediate effect on this type of situation happening again,” security expert Will McManus from Maritime Security Resource Group (MSRG) told Splash today.