NIGERIAN PIRATES HAVE KILLED 4 POLICE OFFICERS AND ABDUCTED 6 OFFSHORE OIL WORKERS
We don't usually post piracy incidents as posts or separate news items as we published months ago they have become all too common. We provide links to several organizations in our News Section provide daily updates on piracy prepared by professional journalists and maritime intelligence specialists. We try to limit our postings to peculiar incidents that signal an observable change in pirate behavior in any sector of the sea trade routes suffering from piracy. Over the week end we learned that the pirates of Nigeria have stepped over a line that surely will escalate violence associated with piracy in the near future. On Friday October 24, 2014 Pirates launched an armed attack on guarded barges and boats on the waterways of Nembe in the Bayelsa State. Along with the barges and boats for the first time that we know of in recent decades pirates also attacked and captured an armed government patrol boat belonging to the Marine Component of the Nigeria Police Force. It is believed by our correspondents that the patrol boat was escorting the Nigerian Agip Oil Company barges when they came under attack. Nigerian Agip Oil company is a subsidiary of the Italian oil giant Eni. Three policemen and possibly the vessel operator (commissioned law enforcement status unknown) were killed in the exchange of gun fire with the pirates.The pirates also took the dead police officers uniforms and firearms. Additional details are conflicting.
Apparently the pirates did not show much interest in the barges and their contents and may have had a political purpose in the attack. The attack delayed passenger traffic when people were attempting to attend a state funeral in Okpoma, the funeral of former Governor Tmipre Sylva's uncle. Mourners were said to have waited at Ogbia and Amakalakal Jetty until the pirates completed their operation.
We don't know if this event signals simply a revelation of the increasingly blood thirsty nature of Nigerian pirates or some turn of the pirates gangs in some political direction. We can tell you that up until now attacks against police officers were rare and attacks on armed government vessels virtually unheard of. Something evil is afoot off of Nigeria.