Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pirates Release Cameroonian Ship Captain

VOA News
29 August 2011

A Cameroonian ship captain who was kidnapped by pirates Saturday in Nigerian waters has been freed. 

The Cameroonian ship Monica and its 150 passengers left Cameroon late Friday, heading west toward Oron in eastern Nigeria.

Trader Linda Mossima was on her way to Nigeria to buy the appliances and other goods she sells in Cameroon.

"We were sailing to Nigeria until about 8 a.m., when we heard gunshots and then some seven heavily armed men came onto the ship from a speedboat.  They asked everyone to freeze, threatening to shoot if anyone moves," she said. "They were in a hurry and rushed into the cabin and dragged out the captain whom they took away in their flying boat."

She said the pirates told passengers the captain had refused to pay "protection tax" to sail in the Gulf of Guinea, which has seen an alarming spike in piracy attacks this year.

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