Violence against shippers off west Africa
Lagos – The waters off West Africa’s coast are now a constant danger for those shipping goods and crude oil in the region, analysts said, a day after pirates killed two sailors near Nigeria’s coast.
Despite pledges by nations to patrol the waters of the Gulf of Guinea, pirates killed a captain and a chief engineer onboard a heavy cargo ship on Monday morning about 126 miles from the coast of Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital.
While shootings and stabbings have happened before in the region, Monday’s assault was one of the deadliest attacks in waters now considered to be as dangerous as those near Somalia. And such attacks are likely to continue.
“It’s quite uncommon that you have people killed this way,” Thomas Horn Hansen, an analyst with Risk Intelligence based in London, said Tuesday. “It might be a matter of luck that hasn’t happened before.”
Authorities released new details on Tuesday about the attack. Commodore Kabir Aliyu, a Nigerian naval spokesman, identified the attacked ship as the Fourseas SW, a bulk cargo ship designed to carry heavy loads like sand.