Saturday, October 15, 2011

Tanker hijacked off Nigeria with 20 crew freed

14 October 2011

LAGOS — The 20 Eastern European crew members of a tanker hijacked off Nigeria nearly a week ago have been freed along with the vessel, officials said Friday, amid mounting concern over West African pirate attacks.

Details of the release of the crew as well as the Marshall Islands-flagged tanker Cape Bird were unclear, including whether a ransom was paid or if the ship's fuel cargo was stolen -- the motive for many hijackings in the region.

"The crew of the Cape Bird have been freed," the Seafarers Union of Russia said in a statement on its website. "The sailors are healthy and there are no injuries."

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