Pirate kidnappings off West African coast rise 40%: Study

The region has overtaken southeast Asia as the worst area for piracy and kidnappings, driving up insurance premiums for shippers.

 

The number of kidnappings reported off the West African coast in the year through September is 40% higher than the same period in 2019, according to the International Maritime Bureau.

Piracy incidents in the Gulf of Guinea contributed to a total of 132 global attacks in the first nine months of 2020, up from 119 in the prior period, the IMB said in a report Wednesday. Out of 85 sailors taken for ransom around the world, 80 were seized off the coast of Nigeria, Benin, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea and Ghana, it said.Incidents on vessels in West African waters have been rising in recent years, with attacks targeting crew rather than the ship or its cargo.

The region has overtaken southeast Asia as the worst area for piracy and kidnappings, driving up insurance premiums for shippers.


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