According to the Russian embassy in Nigeria, seven Russian sailors and a Ukrainian were kidnapped from a cargo ship in Nigerian waters.
“According to the information of the Russian embassy in Abuja, there has been an armed attack on the cargo ship BBC Caribbean which belongs to German company Briese Schiffahrt,” a Russian foreign ministry statement said.
Less than three months ago, three Russians were taken hostage off a ship in Nigerian waters, and were later freed.
The foreign ministry statement added that “seven Russian citizens who are members of the crew have been taken hostage.”
Nigerian navy and police have not made comments on the issue.
A Ukrainian official said one Ukranian national was also on the ship.
“At this time the kidnappers have not made any demands and we don't know the location of the kidnapped sailors,” said Vasyl Kyrylych, an official with the consular department of Ukraine's foreign ministry.
Hijacking ships and kidnapping crews are very common near Nigeria’s southern Atlantic coast, and hostages are usually freed unharmed after a ransom is paid or crude from oil tankers is stolen.
The BBC Caribean, according to the company’s website, is a multipurpose vessel intended for dry cargo and flies the flag of Antigua and Barbuda.