Paksoy-1 cargo ship

Ten Turkish sailors were taken hostage by armed pirates off the coast of Nigeria on Tuesday, Shipping Company, Kadioglu Denizcilik said.

The company added that another eight sailors were safe aboard the ship.

Kadioglu said its Turkish-flagged Paksoy-1 cargo ship was attacked in the Gulf of Guinea as it sailed from Cameroun to Ivory Coast without freight.

“According to initial information, there were no injuries or casualties.

“Efforts for all our personnel to be safely released continue,’’ the company said in a statement.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, the spokesman for Turkey’s ruling AK Party said the government was closely following the matter and called for the sailors to be returned safely.

He declined to give further details.

Kidnappings and piracy for ransom in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea are common.

Last week, the International Maritime Bureau described the Gulf of Guinea as the most dangerous area in the world for piracy.

It said 73 per cent of all sea kidnappings and 92 per cent of hostage-takings took place in the Gulf of Guinea.

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