Two Kidnapped Off Equatorial Guinea

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Two crewmembers have been kidnapped from a general cargo vessel off Equatorial Guinea in the Gulf of Guinea, according to security company Dryad Global. The incident occurred two nautical miles from Malabo on May 9. The pirates reportedly used ladders to board the Rio Mitong from a speedboat. A Russian and a Ukrainian are believed to have been kidnapped. The latest incident follows a report from Dryad of a suspicious approach by a speedboat against a tanker 22 nautical miles off Cameroon several hours earlier.  Since then, at Luba Anchorage, also in Equatorial Guinea, there are unconfirmed reports that two Russian seafarers have been kidnapped from the research vessel MV Djibloho. A report from maritime security company Praesidium International indicates that three seafarers may have been kidnapped: two Russians and one national from Equatorial Guinea. It is unclear what order the incidents occurred in or whether the same group of pirates are involved. There have been other reports of suspicious activity in the region over the last two days, including a report of a speedboat circling an offshore platform off Mayumba, Gabon. “Whilst the trend of incidents within West Africa is showing a gradual decline, there is an upward trend in severity of incidents notably those involving kidnap for ransom,” reports Dryad.