Reports are staying Two seafarers have been injured in a pirate attack on an offshore support vessel in Gabon.
Maritime security companies reported that a platform supply vessel was boarded by three armed men at the Libreville anchorage on 5 September, 5 nautical miles (8 km) from shore.
Dryad Global named the ship as the 4,345-dwt Tampen (built 2002).
The security company understands the crew engaged with the pirates in a bid to repel the attack.
Two crew sustained injuries and are receiving treatment in hospital.
At least one is understood to have been shot.
There were also reports of a missing crew member, who was presumed to have been kidnapped, but this could not be verified.
The ship is in lay-up, according to UK shipbroker Clarksons.
The former Bourbon Maritime vessel is owned by Prince Marine Transport Services of India, which acquired it in January.
The company has been contacted for further information.
“If confirmed, this incident would be the second within Gabonese waters in 2021 and the first reported kidnapping within this time frame,” Dryad said.
“Indeed, region-wide, this latest incident would be the first offshore kidnapping incident reported throughout the wider region since 31 May 2021,” the company added.
Kidnapping incidents in the Gulf of Guinea have undergone a significant downturn this year.
The attack came as another West African country, Ghana, indicated it would be stiffening jail terms for pirates.
The attorney-general and the Ghana Maritime Authority are working on a new maritime bill, which will see pirates receive up to 15 years in prison, domestic media reported.
Convicted gunmen are often sent to Nigeria for prosecution due to gaps in Ghana’s maritime law.
Meanwhile, in Guinea, special forces and other military were reported to have arrested President Alpha Conde and dissolved the country’s constitution.
Gunfire has been heard in the capital Conakry and military personnel have been deployed across the city.
A nationwide curfew is in place as of Monday. Land borders have been closed for a week and some international flights have been cancelled.
Security company ARC said: “It remains to be seen if shipping is affected at Conakry and Kamsar ports.
“Based on AIS movements, some vessels have entered Kamsar port in the last 24 hours, indicating that cargo operations are continuing,” the company added.
ARC believes it is likely that prices for some raw materials, such as bauxite, will be affected as Guinea is a major exporter, but it will be in the interest of any new authorities to make sure supply lines are not affected due to the key role that such exports play in the country’s economy.