Pirates Free 3 Sailors Seized Off Nigerian Coast

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Three sailors kidnapped from a Dutch-owned cargo ship off Nigeria nearly a month ago have been released, Netherlands news agency ANP reported, citing shipowner Seatrade.

The three men, the captain and an officer, both Russians, and a Filipino crew member, had been “relatively well treated” and were “relatively well, given the circumstances,” it quoted a Seatrade spokesman as saying.

The identity of the kidnappers was unknown, said the spokesman, who declined to say whether a ransom had been paid. The sailors were taken captive from the “Breiz Klipper” which was carrying a cargo of frozen fish.

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The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) piracy watchdog in Kuala Lumpur reported on February 29 that pirates had attacked a Dutch-owned and Curacao-flagged vessel off Nigeria’s Port Harcourt the previous day.

A band of eight armed pirates had robbed the 14 crew before fleeing with three hostages, according to the IMB, which said the ship’s crew was made up of Russians, Ukrainians and Filipinos.

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