05-02-2018

Oil tanker with 22 Indians onboard goes missing off West Africa coast, India seeks Nigeria’s aid

A Panama-flag merchant ship with 22 Indian crew members has reportedly gone missing from West Africa’s Benin coast, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Saturday.

“A merchant vessel Marine Express (oil tanker), owned by Mumbai-based Anglo-Eastern shipping company with 22 Indian nationals onboard, is presumably missing off the coast of Benin in the Gulf of Guinea,” MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted on Saturday.

The vessel, loaded with gas oil, is owned by the Mumbai-based Anglo-Eastern shipping company, who has reached out to the directorate general of shipping in Mumbai in order to reach out to their counterparts in Nigeria and Berlin to help locate the merchant ship.

MEA added that the Indian Embassy in Nigeria is in touch with the authorities in Benin and Nigeria for their help in locating the ship and is constantly monitoring the situation. A 24 hour helpline number (+234-9070343860) has been set up by the Embassy for information on those missing.

The Times of India reports that Nigerian authorities have alerted all boats to be on the lookout for the ship and to report any sighting to the International Maritime Bureau's Anti-Piracy Reporting Centre immediately in London.

Source: Time Now

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