Nine Crew Kidnapped from J.J. Ugland Vessel off Benin

Nine crew members were taken hostage from the bulk carrier MV Bonita in the early morning hours of November 2 off Cotonou, Benin, according to the Norwegian shipowner J.J. Ugland.

The anchored vessel was boarded by pirates while it was waiting for berth to discharge inbound cargo of gypsum, a mineral commonly used as fertiliser, destined for Benin.

The remaining crew notified local authorities and Norway-flagged MV Bonita docked at the port city of Cotonou later the same day, the company said in a statement.

J.J. Ugland noted that its Emergency Response Team “are handling this situation as per contingency plans, and they are in contact with relevant authorities.

“The families of the crewmembers have been contacted and will be kept informed by Ugland,” the company added.

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