Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Crewman Killed in Pirate Attack Off West Africa

Dangers Not Just Limited to the Horn
Shipping News Feature

BENIN – According to reports in the AFP a crewman has been killed in an attack on an oil tanker off the coast of the West African country of Benin.

The Monrovia-flagged Cancale Star was boarded on Monday night whilst 18 miles off of the coast. Reports state that the chief mechanic, a Ukrainian, was killed in the attack.

Speaking to AFP the head of the Benin navy said that they were investigating the situation.

Piracy off West Africa is on the rise despite an agreement by Nigeria’s MEND movement, who for several years have been the main culprit for such attacks, to lay down their arms in a recent agreement with the Nigerian government.

This fatality, along with the continuing situation off the East African coast around Somalia, will once again add fuel to the debate over just what is to be done with what looks like the deteriorating situation for global shipping safety.