Five crew were kidnapped from the cargo ship City of Xiamen off the Nigerian coast in April (photo: dpa)

West Africa coast is the new piracy trouble spot

The Gulf of Guinea is being plagued by networks of well-organised hijackers and hostage-takers who are targeting ships and the region’s growing oil and gas industries. The crimes come at great cost - lost port revenue, higher insurance premiums and increased security spending are estimated at about US$2 billion a year. The International Maritime Organisation is helping Gulf states to fight the pirates, but the nations, riven by internal challenges, face a daunting task.

<i>Crime in the wetlands and waters off West Africa has turned the region into a global piracy hotspot. Illicit activity, mostly focussed on shipping and infrastructure related to the extraction and transport of ...

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Dr. James Jay Carafano
The Strait of Malacca was the first seaway in recent years to experience a surge of piracy that impacted international shipping. However, the raiders’ activities have been reduced considerably
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